Shooting pains in the head after getting a tooth implant

Posted by serita @serita, Sep 22 3:57pm

I had a tooth pulled and got the beginning of a tooth implant in March of 2020. A couple of weeks after the removal of the stitches, I got tenderness to the head, a lump on my head on the same side of the implant, and shooting pains in my head. After a CT scan, blood tests, and multiple doctors appointments, I was advised that I had possible nerve damage as a result of the tooth implant and I went back to the Dental Surgeon who decided to remove the implant. However, the shooting pains in my head have not subsided. I would like to know if anyone has experienced this kind of nerve damage and if there is any way of rectifying the problem.

I’m so sorry to hear about your experience. I had to post because I also had a tooth extracted in March and it’s been a disastrous cascade of complications since then. Despite a fever and swelling, my oral surgeon refused to prescribe antibiotics and was adamant it wasn’t infected. The facial pain was horrific. Unlike anything I’d ever experienced. Not long after, one of my knees doubled in size—bright red and incredibly painful to bear weight. It was initially thought to be septic arthritis, but was later diagnosed as reactive arthritis. Oral steroids and a joint steroid injection only made the knee worse. I had a salivary gland ultrasound for the facial swelling, but it was unremarkable. I have severe autonomic dysfunction and the tooth extraction seemed to trigger a massive response. During this entire time, I was passing out at least once a day and my BP and HR were all over the place. I then developed a foreign body granuloma—my body was suddenly rejecting sutures from a surgery 8 years ago and pushing them up out of the skin. I wish I had a happy ending to share with you, but I don’t. To this day, I endure widespread facial pain and debilitating headaches (headache is an understatement) and rely on prescription anti-nausea meds. I’ve lost 20 pounds and am now severely underweight. My chiropractor of 15 years who doesn’t do “traditional chiropractic” care with me, and instead focuses more on muscle release and minor adjustments, has provided me more relief than any pain med or other treatment attempts. He’s theorized that what I’m experiencing is similar to trigeminal neuralgia, but thankfully it’s not that precisely. I’m seeing a specialist next week and will be coming to Mayo in November. I so desperately hope for the both of us that there’s light at the end of the tunnel. Stay strong!

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Your experience after a tooth extraction sounds so much worse than mine, and I do hope you can find some relief soon. I too visited a chiropractor who gives Cranial Sacral Therapy, as that was a therapy recommended to me by a family member in the hope that I could get some relief. I underwent three treatments, but found no relief, and, even felt worse. Until I read your responce to my question, I never thought anything about this occurance, as I have arthritis and swollen joints in several fingers, but after the tooth implant, I got an entirely different kind of swelling at the knuckle of my ring finger of my right hand. Unlike all the other arthritic fingers, which are swollen but solid to the touch, the ring finger swelling is a lot softer to the touch and looks like a huge blister! I mentioned this to the doctors who examined me for the shhoting pains in my head, and they just said it is arthritis and offered no advice or treatment for what I thought was a strange and uncomfortable occurrence! It may be just a coincidence, but it did happen after the tooth implant. Thank you for your response to my question. Very interesting! 🤔 I do hope you can get relief from your painful condition.

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@serita

Your experience after a tooth extraction sounds so much worse than mine, and I do hope you can find some relief soon. I too visited a chiropractor who gives Cranial Sacral Therapy, as that was a therapy recommended to me by a family member in the hope that I could get some relief. I underwent three treatments, but found no relief, and, even felt worse. Until I read your responce to my question, I never thought anything about this occurance, as I have arthritis and swollen joints in several fingers, but after the tooth implant, I got an entirely different kind of swelling at the knuckle of my ring finger of my right hand. Unlike all the other arthritic fingers, which are swollen but solid to the touch, the ring finger swelling is a lot softer to the touch and looks like a huge blister! I mentioned this to the doctors who examined me for the shhoting pains in my head, and they just said it is arthritis and offered no advice or treatment for what I thought was a strange and uncomfortable occurrence! It may be just a coincidence, but it did happen after the tooth implant. Thank you for your response to my question. Very interesting! 🤔 I do hope you can get relief from your painful condition.

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@serita @chiczebra Do you think it is possible that there is an immune reaction to the material in the implant? Some patients react to titanium or surgical implants, and there are different degrees of purity of titanium, so it might be worth investigating. This happened to someone I know, and she was on dose packs of Prednisone for months until they took out the titanium dental implant and replaced it with a bio-compatible ceramic implant. I am going through this process too now and will soon receive ceramic bio-compatible implants that have no metals in them. Here is a lab where you can have blood tested for immune reactions. https://www.orthopedicanalysis.com/ You may also find information on immune responses to implants at the Environmental Health Center of Dallas. They do have some treatment options for implants, but I don't have knowledge of them. https://www.ehcd.com/implant-services/

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@jenniferhunter

@serita @chiczebra Do you think it is possible that there is an immune reaction to the material in the implant? Some patients react to titanium or surgical implants, and there are different degrees of purity of titanium, so it might be worth investigating. This happened to someone I know, and she was on dose packs of Prednisone for months until they took out the titanium dental implant and replaced it with a bio-compatible ceramic implant. I am going through this process too now and will soon receive ceramic bio-compatible implants that have no metals in them. Here is a lab where you can have blood tested for immune reactions. https://www.orthopedicanalysis.com/ You may also find information on immune responses to implants at the Environmental Health Center of Dallas. They do have some treatment options for implants, but I don't have knowledge of them. https://www.ehcd.com/implant-services/

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Thank you for that information. I would be interested to know how long after the implant was installed did the person you know have a reaction? I had no pain at the tooth implant site and the tenderness to the scalp, the lump on my head, and the shooting pains did not develop until weeks after the implant procedure was complete! And the shooting pains in my head have continued and it has been many weeks since the implant was removed.

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@serita

Thank you for that information. I would be interested to know how long after the implant was installed did the person you know have a reaction? I had no pain at the tooth implant site and the tenderness to the scalp, the lump on my head, and the shooting pains did not develop until weeks after the implant procedure was complete! And the shooting pains in my head have continued and it has been many weeks since the implant was removed.

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@serita If I remember correctly, the reaction to the implant started within a month or 2 of when it was placed and she recovered when it was removed. I think we are all different in our timeline of developing a problem, it may happen to you sooner than someone else. It sounds to me like your dental surgeon does not know the source of your pain.

What I think about as a possibility for your head pains may be related to spine/skull alignment. You may have had your neck in an unstable posture while the dental work was being done, and if you are prone to muscle spasms it can create a painful situation that lasts when bones are not in the proper place which stretches muscles and causes pain. I am a cervical spine surgery patient and prior to my spine surgery, I had muscle spasms changing my spine alignment because it independently rotated or twisted vertebrae which caused lots of pain, bad headaches and vertigo when C1 and C2 were affected. Getting everything realigned in therapy resolved it, and after spine surgery corrected the disc problem, everything calmed down. You might want to see a physical therapist for evaluation. This can cause a lot of headaches.

Here is a link that can explain some of the issues. The article describes a lot of posture related problems that lead to instability of the atlas and axis which are the top 2 vertebrae (C1 & C2) that support the skull. He describes cervical "hinging" which is bad forward slouching posture that sticks the neck out like we do when looking at computer screens. Here is a quote from https://mskneurology.com/atlas-joint-instability-causes-consequences-solutions/

"Occipital neuralgia can be devastatingly painful, in similar fashion to trigeminal neuralgia (which you can read more about in my TMD article), and may cause severe neuralgic pain, radiating into the posterior neck and head. It is sometimes described as an electric shock, a sharp and stabbing pain."

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@serita – I’m so sorry about your head pain!!i have had many problems with my teeth over the years and many extractions. With extractions I have left the space as is. I have one bridge, which is OK. At my last extraction I was advised to get an implant because the gap was too big. I declined and so far so good. I have a tendency to get autoimmune reactions.
I spoke to a friend recently who had an implant. The surgeon told her there was a risk that a nerve would be touched that can cause severe pain, even after implant is removed. Apparently, her surgeon was very skilled and so far all is well.
I hope you will get help soon with the pain.

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@astaingegerdm

@serita – I’m so sorry about your head pain!!i have had many problems with my teeth over the years and many extractions. With extractions I have left the space as is. I have one bridge, which is OK. At my last extraction I was advised to get an implant because the gap was too big. I declined and so far so good. I have a tendency to get autoimmune reactions.
I spoke to a friend recently who had an implant. The surgeon told her there was a risk that a nerve would be touched that can cause severe pain, even after implant is removed. Apparently, her surgeon was very skilled and so far all is well.
I hope you will get help soon with the pain.

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Thank you for your input. Unfortunately, I have now been advised that I need two root canal procedures on the other side of my mouth, and I am trying to decide if I should go ahead with root canal surgery or just have those teeth ectracted. It appears thar I could have problems either way! I have been advised to see a neurologist, but one doctor also advised me to get the two teeth taken care of before seeing a Neurologist as the infected root canal teeth could be the cause of the shooting pains in my head! I am so confused right now, and very concerned about the cost of all this treatment without a resolution.

Liked by cb772

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@serita

Thank you for your input. Unfortunately, I have now been advised that I need two root canal procedures on the other side of my mouth, and I am trying to decide if I should go ahead with root canal surgery or just have those teeth ectracted. It appears thar I could have problems either way! I have been advised to see a neurologist, but one doctor also advised me to get the two teeth taken care of before seeing a Neurologist as the infected root canal teeth could be the cause of the shooting pains in my head! I am so confused right now, and very concerned about the cost of all this treatment without a resolution.

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Serita Reyes, Get root canals & save your teeth. Pulling them can cause problems, too & you know I've experienced those. I'm happy to see you using this site!

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@serita

Thank you for your input. Unfortunately, I have now been advised that I need two root canal procedures on the other side of my mouth, and I am trying to decide if I should go ahead with root canal surgery or just have those teeth ectracted. It appears thar I could have problems either way! I have been advised to see a neurologist, but one doctor also advised me to get the two teeth taken care of before seeing a Neurologist as the infected root canal teeth could be the cause of the shooting pains in my head! I am so confused right now, and very concerned about the cost of all this treatment without a resolution.

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@serita You do have some things to think about. Here is some of my experience on that. I had root canals as a kid 50 years ago that later failed as a result of trauma when I broke my front teeth as a kid. I ended up with lots of dental work over the years and 4 root canals in a row that failed. I was surprised that for several years, my asthma got worse because I always had a baseline of chest congestion and allergies and asthma on top of that. I thought it was sinus pain until it ate a hole in my upper jaw and ate the bone. I had an apicoectomy to save the tooth which cut the root tip off so the surgeon could clean out the infection and retreat the tooth from that end packing it with the gutta percha used for root canals. This material contains cadmium which does leach into the body, and I have blood work that confirmed cadmium in my body. The 2nd root canal failed 2 years later and I realized this was a loosing battle. I made the decision to extract all, and replace with bio-compatible zironia implants that do bond with bone tissue. This is expensive, but will be less than efforts to save another tooth every 2 years. I can have a 4 unit bridge attached to only 2 implants (not 4) which also saves money, and it gets the toxic stuff out of my body. My health has improved a lot since the teeth were removed. I have been told that root canals can't remove the bacteria inside the tooth and antibiotics can't reach into the microtubules in the tooth structure, and that eventually root canals fail. Mine had been leaking for several years. I see a biological dentist who explained this and said if it were him, he would not allow a root canal in his mouth, and would instead extract and get a dental implant. My extractions were several months ago, and the sockets were filled with a bone graft to prepare for the implants which I am now ready to receive. You may want to get another opinion with a biological dentist and get an estimate from the oral surgeon that the dentist works with.

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