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Wednesday, August 20, 2014
Face and Jaw Surgery
Paresthesia after wisdom tooth extraction
My daughter had 4 wisdom teeth extracted 7 days ago. For 2 days she was completely numb. On the third day she started to have pins and needles sensation return to a portion of her jaw and chin. Very slowly, more of her jaw is experiencing this sensation, although she still has numbness. She is also experiencing considerable jaw pain and difficulty opening her mouth. Is it likely that the nerve will return to normal since she is having some sensation and what do we look for to indicate a more serious problem. Are there any remedies for a damaged nerve in this area? And what kind of specialist should she seek out?
Most patients with your daughter’s condition recover within 6 months to a year. Return of sensation and pins and needles may suggest early (inferior alveolar) nerve activity. For pain control at this time, she may benefit from medications such as Trileptal (or Tegretol). A consultation with a neurologist or a pain specialist would be helpful.
Salim M Hayek, MD, PhD
Associate Professor of Anesthesiology & Perioperative Medicine
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University