The Cold Hard Tooth, Ow!
January 2, 2007 9:20 PM   Subscribe

Delayed cold sensitivity in teeth? Anyone know what this is? It's not quite a brain-freeze, not actually cold-sensitivity, it's exactly this: 45 minutes to an hour after I eat something frozen, I get a sharp ache deep inside in my upper gums/skull (about where the canine eminence lies).

I don't always get it, but often. It never happens sooner than 45 minutes after I'm done (totally done, ice cream eaten, mouth warm, dessert practically forgotten). The ache is specifically located about 1/2 inch below my right nostril, about where you'd expect the roots of my upper teeth to be. It's not sensitive to touch (in fact feels a bit better if pressed on), and lasts anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour.

I believe one of the teeth there has had a root canal, but that was years ago, and this phenomenon is only months old. My dentist thought I was crazy when I asked her - I can't imagine what would cause such a long delay between cause and effect.
posted by kokogiak to Health & Fitness (7 answers total)
Do you chew on ice? Have you chewed on it frequently in the past?

Very bad for your tooth enamel and can make your teeth & nerve endings more sensitive.

I know when I chew on ice (;-) that I will get the deep ache about 45 minutes later...
posted by jkaczor at 11:33 PM on January 2, 2007

Nope, no ice-chewing, thanks. Hmm.
posted by kokogiak at 4:16 AM on January 3, 2007

Could you possibly be suffering some sort of allergic reaction? You stated that you don't always get it. Does it correlate to some certain type of cold product you are injesting? Does it happen when you drink cold beverages?
posted by bkeene12 at 6:41 AM on January 3, 2007

Nope - only frozen desserts (all types/brands). It's so local (and consistent in placement), that I'd be amazed if it was an allergic reaction - could be though.
posted by kokogiak at 7:07 AM on January 3, 2007

Do you grind your teeth? If so, perhaps your gums have receeded in which case, the slightly exposed bottom of the tooth will now be senitive to cold.
posted by dobbs at 7:18 AM on January 3, 2007

With a root canal in the tooth, I would guess that differential, temperature induced contraction between filler material and your tooth (are filler materials evaluated for compatible coefficients of expansion?) is causing a gap to open up in your tooth and that the material which gets into that (tiny) gap takes forty-five minutes to work its way up to the point it causes you pain.
posted by jamjam at 8:43 AM on January 3, 2007

Have you seen a dentist? Tried Sensodyne toothpaste? perhaps your gums are receeding a bit?
posted by drstein at 10:07 AM on January 3, 2007

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