QUESTION: Am I just unlucky or what?  I have had more than my share of bullseye novocaine shots that numb my tongue for days if not weeks.  The electric shock when I get them is incredible.  Since this has happened by several dentists and one oral surgeon, is it the position of my nerve or what?  Can a dentist prevent this from happening?

ANSWER: i definitely feel that that is the case. your lingual nerve is apparently right in the path of where we all like to deliver the anesthetic. and if you put it right on the nerve, you get a huge zing and profound, long-lasting numbness. most of the time, we place it in an area and it seeps around until it gets near the nerve. the closer you are, the more numb you are.

how to prevent this? tough answer. that is because we are taught to place it in a certain spot after feeling for a few landmarks. if we try to place it somewhere else, it usually will not work. talk to your dentist...maybe he/she can change things up a little.

i hope this explains things to you

good luck

jeff dalin dds

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: is there a difference between a mandibular block and a local?  I need to have an implant placed, tooth 32 and am afraid it may happen again.

a local means just getting local anesthetic. there are different styles of injections given under this broad category. a block is given way in the back and it is to block the nerve impulses before it gets into the jaw. it numbs half of the lower jaw along with the tongue side (a lingual nerve gets numbed at the same time). another style is called infiltration where you deposit the anesthetic right next to the tooth. this works well on top teeth as well as lower teeth toward the front. there are other blocks you can do on top. i hope this helps out.

jeff dalin,dds


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Jeff Dalin DDS


general dentistry questions with topics ranging from cosmetic dentistry to dentistry for children


Fellowships in American College of Dentists, the Academy of General Dentistry, and the International College of Dentists.

©2017 All rights reserved.