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New Numbness

Posts: 190
Joined: Feb 2010

Hey ... My husband has a new numbness on his tongue... on the side that took the hardest radiation... it seems to be getting a lttle worse. He had 2 root canals a few weeks ago... all seemed to be okay... now he has more teeth bothering him...
any thoughts?... seems like everytime something comes up it worries me something fierce!

Hondo's picture
Posts: 6643
Joined: Apr 2009

I too have the numbness but it comes and goes and the teeth seam like everyday there is something new. I go to MD Anderson next months to see if they can help get me some relief with the pain. I look at it as just another side affect of treatment.

Thanks cane

johnlax38's picture
Posts: 136
Joined: Aug 2010

My dental surgeon and oncologist both said that radiation is very bad for teeth and speeds up the decay process. I had 5 teeth pulled before treatment as preventative maintenance. Best thing to do is check with the doc is symptoms don't go away.

RushFan's picture
Posts: 223
Joined: Aug 2010

Sorry to hear about the change...I've recently completed treatments and it seems like "something" is different every few days...and I wonder "now what".

I concur with johnlax, check with your doc or nurse. My Rad Onc stressed the importance of "meticulous" dental hygiene and warned about tooth sensitivity.

fisrpotpe's picture
Posts: 1349
Joined: Aug 2010

14 plus years of the same every couple days. One day your fine, the next you have a couple in the back bothering you, they go away soon and one on top and etc etc etc. Most important is to keep your teeth and especially your gums but most importantly keep the gum line clean. Clean your teeth after each meal and most importantly before bed. Recently 7 months ago I purchased a water pick. I have used and love it but it is only a small part of my three times per day regiment. I use the water pick first, then floss, then bush with sonic care tooth brush and Bioteen Drymouth toothpast, I then again use the water pick again using a full tank each time. Then at bed time and morning I use sonic care tooth brush with my flouride. My dentist at Indiana University like this as the tooth brush as it pushes the flouride between the gum and tooth. This gum line is the worst part for decay to start.

I believe the x ray they can do to look at your whole jaw is called a Radiogram. It will x ray your whole jaw looking for infection. It took me 35 sec. to have this scan.

The one thing we as radiation survivors do not want is a tooth to get infected and that infects the jaw bone. Options for infected jaw bone are not exciting at all.

I had to after 14 years have my first two teeth pulled on the bottom back right. What normally would take the non radiated person 14 days to fully heal over has now taken me 18 weeks to get a small bit over the jaw bone without infection. We are survivors do not heal fast do to damage to blood vessels.

After doing tooth cleaning for months, after dealing with pain changing locations for years this all becomes normal.

I worst part about this is I have to drive 2 hours one way just to have them cleaned and looked at. Then back again in two weeks if there is a problem that needs touched up.

Keep them clean and learn to live with this like it is normal.

Good Luck and keep us posted please.

denistd's picture
Posts: 578
Joined: Apr 2009

I just had a tooth out today, so bad the oral surgeon had to cut through the gum, tooth was in terrible shape, had to have a couple of stitches, it's all normal for post radiation, I am 14 months out and losing a tooth every 2 to 3 months, I will probably have the remainder on the bottom pulled and get a plate, the top teeth are no problem.

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