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A 44-year-old female asked:

Asked to bond a crooked front tooth . dentist did x-ray first (inconclusive). so she tested it (had no feeling to cold). no decay, pain or trauma to tooth. does this always indicate a dead tooth?

2 doctor answers7 doctors weighed in
Dr. Gary Sandler
Dentistry 55 years experience
No: Different patients have different pain thresholds. I have some dental patients who I can drill almost into the nerve and they feel nothing, while others jump and squawk at the slightest touch. The tests you mention are generally inconclusive and cannot be relied on solely to judge the vitality of a tooth.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Theodore Davantzis
Dentistry 41 years experience
Not always: Just because you're not sensitive to cold does not mean the tooth is non-vital. A pulp tester that places a small electrical stimulus will answer your question for sure.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Last updated Jul 13, 2014

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