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NUMB CHIN AND LOWER LIP
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Avatar_f_tn
Thank you for your help. I ended up in the er yesterday because i woke up really dizzy, and felt like i was going to pass out when i move,and had a bruise come up on the lower part of my chin that is red and really sore. they ended up doing iv antibiotics and a contrast ct scan. Which showed there is air in my jaw tissue and throat tissue. The dr couldn't figure out how it had got there since the dentist didn't use a drill to take the wisdom tooth out. They said that the air should resolve its self, they also put me on a new antibiotic to help with any infection that may try to occur. I went to the dentist this morning and the dentist that seen me today wasn't very nice, she was very rough when she check me out and made me hurt so much worse that i left in tears, she didnt seem to care that i was in pain or sympathy for what is going on. I still have the numbness in my chin, lip, face and a little in the side of my neck. They told me to come back Thursday for a recheck.
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Avatar_m_tn
Can you explain the circumstance by which you had to have your wisdom tooth unexpectedly extracted?  Was this an emergency procedure and if so why?

This forum will be an asset to you to navigate your recovery and hopefully comfort you by providing you the information you need.  Unfortunately the dental community doesn't really convey the reality of nerve damage very well but those here who have lived it can explain what to expect moving forward.  By the sound of everything, you need a lot of TLC as btw we all have needed along the way.  I hope you have family to comfort you over the weeks to come.

I also want to provide you assurance that the pain you feel in your face and jaw will diminish with healing.  

The next 3 months will determine the status of your nerve and hopefully you will be on the road to recovery.

Take care and post with any concerns.
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Avatar_f_tn
I had went in to have my lower partial fixed because it broke, while I was there I showed the dentist what I thought was a tooth\ bone fragment that my partial had been rubbing on that was sore, the dentist numbed the area so he could make a small incision to try to remove it. It ended up that it was my wisdom tooth coming in. The dentist said it needed to come out or eventually I wouldn't be able to wear my partial at all. He said all he had to do I make the incision a little bigger and pull it out, like it was no big deal, never said there could be any adverse side effects. So I said OK, might as well get it over with while I was there, I had left work early anyway, and didn't want to have to take more time off work to have to come back. It took the dentist a long time to get it out 20-30 min, he kept saying that it was stuck that he had to get it in the right position to come out and then several times he said he needed to make the incision bigger. At one point he did something not sure what but it hurt so bad I jerked my legs up and ended up grabbing his arm and screamed out really loud because it hurt so bad he also slipped several times and I felt the scalpel jab the back of my throat.... Since Sunday I have been getting a lot of dizzy spells and feeling sick to my stomach, many times feeling like I'm going to pass out. And this morning I woke up with blood coming out of my mouth, at first I thought it was the incision so I went and rinsed my mouth with water and looked in with a flash light but there was no blood so I spit again and I had bright red blood in the sink again, I got to looking and I had bit a chunk of my numb lip and it bled pretty bad for about 10 minutes and with it being numb I didn't feel a thing. The whole side of my face and neck constantly hurts, and i cant take the pain meds till night time because i work m-f 7am-5pm and then after that im with my 3 kids so i have to wait till there asleep before i take anything more that tylenol. On top of all of this i am also scheduled to have surgery on the 29 of this month to repair a abdominal wall hernia, im so scared that something is going to go wrong with that surgery like it has with this..This whole situation feels almost unbearable, I litera feel like I'm going to go insane :'(
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Avatar_m_tn
A tough set of circumstances. I won't second guess your dentist because something might be lost in the translation but if the dentist had taken an X-ray he would know it was your wisdom tooth and not just a fragment to knock down for clearance to your partial.  Further if the dentist pulled out the wisdom tooth not knowing proximity of the wisdom tooth root  to the Inferior alveolar nerve, this is irresponsible.  But again, maybe the sequence of events was different and he took the proper steps.  Wisdom teeth can very difficult to extract.  Mine took 1 hour for the surgeon to remove in the hospital and I was knocked completely out.

Biting the lip is common with the numbness most of us have felt after our tooth extraction.  Normally the lip, chin and gum are numb and not painful if the nerve has been disrupted...but no doubt each of go through a slightly different healing process.  As to jaw pain which I had a lot of...removing a wisdom tooth many times will injury the jaw muscle.  Sure did in my case and took several weeks to calm down.  I too had throat pain.  The throat can become raw because of this surgery.

You are going through a lot and myself and others have felt terror over what happened to each of us.  Some can cope with this fear without meds and strong family support and others will struggle which I believe makes this injury much worse to deal with.  If you feel like you are going off the deep end, then you need a medicine to calm you down.  Have this discussion with your dentist or family doctor.  I mentioned the medicine I used sparingly when I felt desperate in my previous posts.  There are also longer term anti depressants available if you struggle longer term.  Once you get though the next couple of months, your healing will give you hope that you will be OK and mentally you will be better.  We know what you are going through because we have gone through the same thing.

As discussed, your nerve waking back up which many times will incite pain is an indication that the nerve is still intact.  This can take 4-6 weeks.  If you have complete numbness at the 2 month point, then you need to have a CBCT scan to assess the status of the nerve.  But you are long way from that point now and should just rest and heal.

My thoughts are with you and all that are suffering on this forum.

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Avatar_f_tn
Hi! It has been awhile since I have posted but I consistently read the comments. This support community has been a valuable lifeline for me, especially in the earlier days of my injury! I read and re-read all the posts.

I am now at 16 months. Honestly, I don't know how I would have coped knowing the injury would probably not fully heal. I have NOT given up hope or faith, but I think I am at the realistic stage for my personal progress. Time really does make a difference.

Fortunately I did not have the severe pain that many of you experienced. I, too, had the lightening flashes both sudden and sometimes constant. Today, it is just the tightness and numbness. I feel like I want to "stretch" out my lower lip down to my jaw and the tightness will release - but of course it does not. I still have that horrible habit of subconciously biting on the numb lip. I now have a little protusion there. Any suggestions on how I can quash this bad habit?

My heart breaks for the younger folks on this blog. Did you read that this also happened to my son in his mid 30's? My 18 yr old grandson is having his wisdom teeth removed this coming weekend and I am really concerned for him. I wonder if there is a genetic disposition to this injury - we were born with  these nerves closer to the surface than others? But a close friend who is a dentist in another state says he NEVER recommends removal of wisdom teeth in adults, only younger people. My daughter had her wisdom teeth removed in her mid teens and she healed just fine.

Initially my doctor suggested pain medication targeted toward nerves, but I didn't think I needed it. However, I would not hesitate to take both the pain meds and an antidepressent if necessary. We are fortunate to live in a time when this sort of help is available. So, when will they develop a treatment for our nerve injuries ;-)

Best wishes to this blog community! Thank you for your insight and support. And prayers that many will heal or find the strength to cope!
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Avatar_m_tn
funinsun1,
Good to hear from you.
Have you noted any improvement in your symptoms in the last 3 months or so?  Do you feel you are improving with each month?

Thanks and my best to you.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi,  I had my lower left wisdom tooth extracted 7 days ago and he left side of my chin has a numb feeling .  I can feel hot and cold but when I run my hand over the chin area there is a numb sensation. I  am also experiencing itching and tightening sensations and was wondering if that means its trying to heal.
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Avatar_m_tn
If you already have some sensation 7 days after your tooth extraction, that is a positive sign.  Yes, itching generally is a sign of healing and tightness is typically a by product of an area still not healed.  Hopefully damage to your IAN is minimal and you will experience a rapid recovery.
Best of luck.  If your injury lingers which it has for many on this forum, read back through the forum for the experiences shared to give you further perspective.
Heal fast ivy.
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Avatar_m_tn
hi to you and  all on this  forum.  Regarding the tightness in the lip and chin i do believe this is the worse part of the injury.  My injury occurred in May this year and sometimes I think there are improvements with more sensation in the chin and  less  burning but the top of my lower lip tingles sharply if i run my finger over it.  I have  days  where i feel positive and others when I don't. I am willing to try anything to resume my former life, albeit medication or acupuncture etc. The steroid injection may be worth looking at also.  I don't like taking medications but needs must.

There are many worse illnesses than IAN injury and i keep telling myself this and this helps me be positive.  I think distraction by focusing on other things and keeping busy is helpful.  I hope you and all continue to heal and stay positive.  
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Avatar_m_tn
Hey everyone:

I have not posted in a while so I will give an update on my situation. Its been a little over 3 months since surgery and not much healing in the past few weeks or so. I would say I'm at the same level of healing about 70-80%.

I still have the tightness and can tell it is still somewhat partially numb a bit. I also still get hyper sensitivity in the small area affected. I'm hoping it will eventually heal.

I have been busy finishing up y degree in engineering.

Any ways good luck to everyone.
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Avatar_n_tn
thanks for your fast reply .   my dentist made me aware that my tooth was very close to the nerve and  planned to do a coronectomy on the tooth but when he started the procedure  the tooth was too bad so he had to extract. the tooth was movable and came out in one piece ,whole thing was done in about 10 minutes. I started taking B1,B6 and B 12as sublingual methylcobalanin, magnesium and choline inositol as I heard these help the nerve heal.  .I read thru the posts and it sounds like you  have to wait it out and see what happens. i'm going back to my dentist tomorrow so I  will see what he has to say
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Avatar_m_tn
How to address Tightness Part 1:

Hi kazlilly,

I wrote in an earlier post specifically about tightness because we agree, tightness is the scourge of this injury and likely causes the most discomfort once transitioning past the neuropathic pain phase of the recovery process.

Since you and I had our wisdom tooth out in May about 5 months ago with injury to your IAN and likely not too far apart in our healing process and both with tightness, lets explore where we go from here.

Unfortunately we are at 2014 and not 2090 or so.  I believe by then all the suffering here will not exist.  We are in the stone age of dentistry and even though this injury occurs to a very small minority of those that have their wisdom teeth extracted, it still occurs with alarming regularity by all that still come to this site and it is pretty devastating to many when the injury lingers.

So first question is...how long to wait kazlilly before we do anything about it?  I agree with you, having tightness every day if not most minutes of the day is not a good way to live.  Yes, we are coping at some level but this is very bothersome.  So will give you my thoughts.

I don't know what level of recovery that I will have as I type this at 5 months.  I hope I travel the same path as Starbrite and have nearly full recovery at 1.5 years, but I have no confidence this will occur.  I only hope it will.  My dilemma of course is how long to wait before taking further action.  First, since we live in an apparent stone age of dentistry when this is still happening to the good people here, there aren't a great number of options for us.  We are in effect our own focus group or guinea pigs for how to cope with this uncomfortable nerve damage.

So these are my thoughts:
1. I need to see some level of change or recovery.  For me, I have.  I have gone through tremendous pain btw.  This has been the most grueling event in my life so far.  I am a lot better than I was.  My mouth seems to change weekly.  I still believe I have a shot at close to full recovery...or in the 90% range at least with minimal discomfort.  But still a long way away.

2. So my belief is I need to wait to see what level the nerve returns to.  What quality of life I will have, recognizing that the tightness I have today is not something I want to live with.

3. When does tightness occur and what does it mean?  When I wake up in the morning...for the first 1-2 minutes before I move my mouth, my mouth feels close to normal.  After 5 minutes it doesn't and gets tight.  So my tightness is motion sensitive.  The injured nerve becomes aggravated by motion.  When I talk and eat for example, I can go from a state of coping, to a state of being highly agitated and distracted.  Jaw motion really bothers my IAN injury.

4. There are probably three ways this can change:
    a. nerve heals
    b. neuropathic drugs with anticonvulsant properties to desensitize the   nerve to motion or lessen it.
    c. a method of killing the nerve at some level...one option being a pulsing radio frequency probe into the affected area disconnecting the nerve from the brain.

continued in Part 2...
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Avatar_m_tn
How to address Tightness Part 2:

To me, those are the three options as they exist today.

So kazlilly since we agree about tightness being an awful way to live, above as I understand it today based upon everything I have read are our three options.

My thought is we and probably others that suffer tightness here need to let the healing process run its course.  To me this is the 1 year mark.   So I have been taking a wait and see position a bit on this in spite of the discomfort also driven by all the positive changes in my mouth and chin.  There is a clear downside to take neuropathic drugs and will take trial and error to tune not only choice of med and dosage but related to effectiveness and side effects.  So I have been gutting out the discomfort of tightness like many here, hoping that healing takes this tightness away.  But judging by the forum here, that may only be just a hope and not reality.

Another point...will taking neuropathic drugs inhibit the nerve healing process?  According to my nerve specialist, no.  So I am considering by Christmas or so, to start to experiment with a med or two that diminishes tightness if this is even possible. Unfortunately I haven't read of a single person who has take neuropathic drugs for tightness...only for pain.  I wish we had somebody to compare with or a study that has been performed, but we don't seem to.  So I believe we will have to take the lead on this which hopefully can not only help ourselves but others who suffer as well.

A last point.  Killing a percentage of the nerve is probably a last resort after the healing process has run its course and perhaps more than a little experimentation with meds to quiet the nerve.  In other words, the nerve regenerates on some level and the result is highly uncomfortable and the patient decides for more invasive action and relief.  So blocking the signal to the brain is the only relief.  To me pulsing a RF signal into the nerve comes with risk.  How much of the nerve do you kill?  How much sensation loss will there be?  Can tightness be effectively targeted without further sensation loss?  Many unanswered questions that we may need more answers to if this path is even considered.  But this procedure is an option for pain sufferers in particular.

Above are my thoughts and please let me know if/when you plan on evaluating different meds to reduce the tightness many of us suffer with.

My best to you and everybody here.





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Avatar_m_tn
Maybe some hope....

Some that have read through the forum here know there are many ways to damage the inferior alveolar nerve (or lingual nerve) during surgery.
1. 3rd molar extraction
2. Implants
3. Direct needle injection during anesthesia

Below is a case study of a lady that had her IAN injured due to a needle injection and she suffered long term pain as a result.  She also had some other jaw related pain.

To address the IAN pain, Dr. Wesley Shankland of Columbus Ohio
prescribed Medrol dose pak and has had great success with the regimen of local anesthetic mixed with Sarapin and oral Medrol.  Basically the nerve is injected to remove the pain and reduce inflammation.  I would like to have a conversation with Dr. Shankland to see if he could provide relief to some of us here and if it would improve the tightness many of us feel daily.
It seems like there should be a procedure for injecting the tight area for relief.

Here is the case study and it makes sense that the nerve has to be infiltrated or altered at some level to eliminate pain or tightness if the nerve doesn't heal properly.

http://www.practicalpainmanagement.com/pain/maxillofacial/injection-needle-injury-oral-sensory-nerves

Anybody here near Columbus Ohio?
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Avatar_m_tn
I found Dr. Shankand's website for contact information.
If somebody else doesn't first, even though I am in FL, I will contact him or his office for discussion.  He may have a colleague closer to me, but if not and I don't have a higher level of recovery over time, I would even consider traveling to him for his procedure or a derivative procedure he may recommend.

http://www.drshankland.com/procedures.aspx
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Avatar_n_tn

I saw the dentist today for my post check up and told him about the numbness to the left side of my chin...he tested me for feeling by pocking my chin with a needle an then had me close my eyes and tell him in what direction he was touching my face.  I was able to feel both and he said that was good sign and  he also asked if i had any sensations and when i told him i had itching he said that was a good sign too. The wisdom tooth was very bad and i was told that i was about to get very sick from it if i left it in so there wasn't any choice.   I have another appointment in two weeks, hopefully there will be some more improvement.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi Guy's. I guess why not join your group. Am a newbie and would have certainly been more enjoyable to just read your posts but may have never discovered how uncomfortable life can be with this type of injury until I myself have experienced the numbness. The numbness is in my lower lip half of my chin and gums after implant placement. It's been a month now and can't stop searching for treatments and info about what to do with this problem. It is certainly consuming my life. Used to enjoy jogging and the freedom of running but now, feel like something is heavy on one side of my face preventing me from running as fast. It's sooo strange. Tingling has diminished but the heavy swollen feeling constantly is debilitating. From the moment I wake up to the time I go to sleep. Glad I'm not alone.
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Avatar_m_tn
froggy,
If I were you, I would seek a CBCT scan ASAP to determine if your implant is still putting compression on your inferior alveolar nerve causing your numbness.  An implant should not damage an IAN unless it was improperly sized thereby crushing the IAN.  If the implant isn't removed and properly resized, your IAN will not regenerate which would be a double wrong perpetrated by your dentist.  So don't walk but run back...today if possible to your dentist.  Find out if he/she has a CBCT scan machine if not seek an oral surgeon with this capability to determine the depth/position of the implant relative to the IAN.
Good luck.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi to you and all posting, thank you for your detailed reply,I can sometimes get a bit overwhelmed by the amount of information there is and at the same time still too many question marks.  I read the case study on the misplaced injection to the ian nerve (this was what happened to me), although I do have very similar symptoms to you and others on this site who have had different procedures resulting in this injury.  I have taken note of the medication-treatment used and  hopefully will be able to ask the consultant about it (still not seen) when I get an appointment.  

I admire your proactive approach to this 'illness' and feel this is a good way forward.  I try to be philosophical and patient but I go from calm to panic attacks within hours.   I do note that when I am calm the injury doesn't seem as painful, so I do think the pain and tightness are exaggerated when I panic about it.  Sometimes when I wake up I think it's gone but like you after moving the jaw more the burning and the tightness is back, which adds to the anxiety.  I suppose I have to be grateful that it is not debilitating in that I continue to work and seem to others to be relatively 'normal'.   I feel we have to keep positive for the future and hope that time does heal!  Take care everyone, we all know what we are going through and we're not alone.
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Avatar_m_tn
To those suffering with pain and Tightness:

I wanted to follow up a bit as I prepare to contact Dr. Shankland in Ohio for his advice.  I wrote above about Tightness which is pervasive and uncomfortable to many on this forum and tried to understand the root cause and may have stumbled onto something I want to share.  I also wrote, that unlike many here, I am not content to settle for discomfort past the one year point as many have.  I would like to seek relief and get my life back and also help people here which would do my heart a world of good if I could relieve others of the pain and tightness I have experienced due to this injury.

If you think about tightness...what is it?  I believe it is spasming of tissue and muscles that comprise the chin, gum and/or lip because of alteration to the IAN.  Some of you may know about muscle spasms, myofascial pain/release and trigger points.

My belief is this is what we have with our condition and why Dr. Shandland's therapy is perhaps our gateway to relief.  I dug around the web some more to see if I could find more of an understanding of what Dr. Shandland provided in his case study and I found the following link:

http://sycamoreintegratedhealth.com/services/injections/

To me this is very encouraging.  An injection that releases the trigger point as the root cause of tightness.

I will be contacting Dr. Shandland for this advice in the next short while and share further thoughts.  I want to say lastly, that I need hope as I go through yet another repetitive of pain and tightness 5 months out that I don't have to live this way.  I am hopeful that none of will with the proper steps.

PS: for those seeking local pain relief or trying to.  One of the problems with this issue is find those in the medical field that can help us.   They are out there I believe like Dr. Shandland, but not easy to locate.  But as I linked the article just above, perhaps this type of trigger release injection is not an uncommon therapy however it is not widely known to be effective for the relative low incidence of IAN injuries.  If you read the case study I linked further above, the case study article starts by saying there are a lot more IAN sufferers in the world than even the medical field understands.
People finding this forum everyday confirms what we certainly know.

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Avatar_m_tn
Kazlilly,
Panic attacks:
Many including me have had them.  I strongly encourage you to not gut those attacks out.  This is too much burden over and above the pain you (we) are going through.  I wrote a while back about taking Ativan on occasion when needing help with anxiety.  This is the best medicine ever invented and yes there is synergy between pain and anxiety due to diminished serotonin levels.  See your family doctor for a prescription before you suffer with panic any longer.  I have only needed it 3 times in the last 5 months but they kept me off the ledge.

Hope:
There is hope on two levels Kazililly.  One is that we will continue to heal.  You and I are at 5 months and have a way to go yet.

Second level is therapy.  It is unclear if the rest of the country has caught up to Dr. Shankland in terms of the therapy he administers for this injury.  Perhaps not.  But we have him.  Yes, please ask your consultant about this therapy and see if it is a common practice.  If it is, it sure isn't known on this forum.  I admit to being shocked how much suffering there is here relative to how little therapy is pursued.

If I can't find a local pain doctor or the hospital to administer this therapy I will travel to Ohio at some point if my pain and tightness continues.  In fact, I may only go to Dr. Shankland because of his pedigree and I don't want to put myself in further harm's way by further experimentation.  Each of us being knows the medical community has room for improvement.

One of the signature questions I want to ask Dr. Shankland is, how long should we wait for the nerve to heal to know that there is little chance for further healing and if this point in time is necessary to pass for him to inject the nerve.  Point being, I don't want to administer a therapy that may Impede further/complete healing of the nerve.  This is a pivotal question and I will share his answer.
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Avatar_n_tn
it is now 11 days post surgery of my wisdom tooth.   my symptoms are numbness in my chin and a tight feeling that comes and goes,  I find my self wanting to stretch my mouth to release  the tightness.   I know its early in the game so I am trying not to go into panic mode. My heart goes out to all those suffering with this injury.
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10956856_tn?1414108005

I had my implant November 2013 . I had a burning lower lip, sensation chin since this surgery . I saw a neurologist , I did a MRI . I take Oxcarbazepine 150 mg 2 pills per day . Nothing is help . My family told me I need to be patient because nerve it takes long time for heal .
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Avatar_m_tn
Mytat,
Are you saying that Oxcarbazepine does not help at all?  Have you tried upping the dosage or perhaps another neuropathic drug?
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10956856_tn?1414108005
I did take gabapentin , and recently change to Oxcarbazepine . Can I try upping to 3 times a day ?  Thanks .
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Avatar_m_tn
If you read accounts of different sufferers of neuropathic pain on line, you will learn that many experiment heavily with not only different med's but different dosages of those med's.  With med's of this nature there can be side effects as well.  Further your body weight affects dosage.  I corresponded with a suffer of  TN (worse that what we have) and he went to a no. of different neurologists and said there is little science associated with what med or combination of meds and related dosages will help.  So you have to experiment if a given neurologist and/or med and dosage doesn't work out with what they suggest.

Discussing your background maybe helpful if not to yourself or perhaps others.  A faulty implant is a common method of injuring the IAN.  You said you had a MRI.  Perhaps you could explain if you had your implant removed and replaced with a more shallow implant to take pressure off your IAN.  A MRI should expose this relationship.  I can't visualize a scenario where an implant is installed, injures an IAN and then stays in place or deemed acceptable by a MRI.  Perhaps you could explain further.
Good luck.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi Timeheals and everyone
thank you for all your shared information it really is a comfort to me.  I am at about the same timescale as you (from May 2014) and nearly approaching the 6 month mark.  The waiting and anticipation of this injury make it quite difficult to deal with at times.  I  would travel to the other side of the world to  get rid of this, so I will have continued interest to find out anything that helps.  

I have an appointment to see the maxillofacial consultant in December, therefore I will try and wait to see what he says.

I hope you all continue to heal and get back to normal.  

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Avatar_m_tn
Hi Kazlilly,
Let me know if you would like to catch up and have a dialog.  One of my frustrations is...discussion on this board is somewhat unilateral.  Not sure why that is.  But I don't want to occupy the bandwidth here without conversation because the devil is in the details as you know.  I would say the vast majority of posts here are 'drive bys'...people post and then don't come back or perhaps choose to not communicate.  Not sure why as I am completely the opposite.  Because this injury is so life altering, I want to get to the truth but hate speaking in a vacuum. :-)
What would you say your ratio of pain to tightness is?  Lots of pain?  Lots of tightness?  Let me know if you want to compare notes.  We could even do it off line via email.  Let me know.
Best Regards.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi to you and all
I have to inform you and everyone at the time i set up the communication with the forum I used an email that I share with someone but it is registered in his name, therefore my profile suggests I am male- I am in fact a 56 year old female, might not make any difference to most people but thought I better clarify this.  

with regards to the pain and tightness ratio at present is pain level 4-5 and intermittent burning - pain level 3-4.  I think the overall pain is tolerable, particularly if it is to get back to normal.  I believe that the worst part of this is the not knowing if it is permanent or if the healing will continue.

Now my own email is up and running I would indeed be interested to speak off line as I feel we are at the same time level and can offer one another support.  Not sure how to facilitate this though?

Take care and continue to heal everyone.
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Avatar_m_tn
Kazlilly,
I have sent you a private message with my email address and hope you receive it.  

As stated and to all:
It is my goal to research this injury to the best of my ability and then post coping/therapy strategies for the best quality of life moving forward.  Dr. Shankland who administered the nerve block therapy for the woman in the case study I linked above....has responded to my initial email and I have just sent him another query with follow up questions.  I will share what I learn about best options which should have particular value to long term sufferers who are due for some much needed relief.

I believe with the proper steps, each of us that don't completely heal from injury to the IAN can still experience a good life without pain provided best practices available are followed.

It is my hope that with the information I provide in the next couple of weeks, this will be a springboard to more therapy options as our strategies are further expanded by sharing our collective experience.

Heal fast everybody.
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Hi Timeheals.  Again I find a great health community in the US - I'm in Australia and we don't do this sort of thing anywhere near as well as you guys.  I found this forum while doing a Google search for 'numb chin' :-)  I've read a lot of this particular thread and I give you a lot of respect for your pro-active approach to your issue, as well as your obvious commitment to sharing the information you uncover in order to help others.    After reading some of the stories people have shared here, I feel like I don't have too much to complain about.  I had what is known as terminal dentition - despite maintaining good oral hygiene my teeth were breaking leading to multiple dental abscesses and quite a few hospital stays.  A week ago I bit the bullet (not literally!) and had my remaining 21 teeth extracted.   During the same surgery, my lower jaw bone was shaved and prepped, and 4 implants were then inserted.  2 days after surgery I had a temporary prosthesis fitted to my lower jaw and a full upper arch denture to the top.  My oral-maxillofacial surgeon advised me that doing implants to both jaws would be too much for me, so the plan is to do that in 6 months.   The post-surgery numbness has gone, except for the right side of my chin which is completely numb.  Since the implants were evenly distributed between the left and right side of my jaw, I'm not sure why only the right side is numb.    It'll be interesting to see if the numbness resolves, and if I get any of the tightness you describe.    I already have total paresthesia of the front of my thigh, courtesy of spinal surgery - it's been 10 months now so I don't think that's going to get any better.     Anyway - very nice to make your acquaintance - I've read your story and you've been through a great deal, as have many others whose stories I've read.   Wishing you and all posters here a resolution to your health issues.
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Hi Beth,
Thanks for your kind words and welcome to the forum.  You have been through so much and yes we all have....too much really.  Least I can do is try to distill some direction that we can draw upon or try to make some sense or order from the dis-ease each have been subjected to by this injury.

As discussed previously, there are three principle ways the IAN can be injured in the dentist chair...and likely many more through accidents resulting in jaw breakage etc.  Most involve wisdom tooth extraction, anesthetic needle injections into the nerve or dental implants.  Implant injuries are due to either the implant fastener crushing the IAN or the drill to create the implant fastener going too deep.  As to why you suffer on one side and not the other, there are two plausible reasons.  Our bodies are not perfectly symmetric and therefore the nerve does not have the same symmetric depth relative to your gum line and every time an oral surgeon drills into the jaw to create an implant he/she may not do so with the same precise depth.  To me, implants as effective as they may be, seem to be higher risk than the public understands going in.
So it really comes down to the due diligence of the oral surgeon in terms of knowing precisely where the nerves are...with either a MRI or CBCT scan ...and then....making sure when he drills or chooses an implant depth/size, that does not violate the IAN.  I think a couple of things are happening in the dental chair.  1. doctors aren't being as careful as they should...or 2. giving them the benefit of the doubt, even jaw bone density may affect the depth of the drill.  Suffice to say with all the implant injuries to the IAN, this technology needs to improve.

So where do we go from here.  You need to be vigilant for the next 3 months in particular to gage how much sensation is restored to your chin.  If you get no return of sensation say after 2 months, then perhaps further intervention is in order to repair the IAN with microsurgery.  I would seek consultation say at the 2-4 week point.  It is not uncommon to have a lot of numbness even at 4 weeks.  At 6 weeks the nerve should be waking up however and if it isn't, further testing is in order.

As to recovery after that, it largely depends on the magnitude of injury to the IAN.  This is where I want to construct a list of options for those of us going through this because options aren't really well explained on the internet and even among the MD's we visit for guidance.

I am a big fan of Aussies and your fun loving culture and wish you well with your health and recovery.  Kazlilly just above is in the UK and I am in the US so this injury is global in the lives it unfortunately affects.
Heal fast Beth and please post with your progress or any concerns you have.
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Hi again Timeheals, thanks for your lovely welcome and very interesting info on these types of nerve injuries.  I found your discussion of how the IAN nerve can be injured in the dentist's chair (or in my case, on the operating table) very enlightening. I think your plan to develop a list of options for people who may be unfortunately facing a permanent nerve injury is great, and I know that such a list would be of enormous benefit to so many.    

Yes, I think that the possible risks of implant surgery are perhaps not widely understood.   It's quite popular in Australia for people to go to Thailand for their dental care, including implants.  While I recognize that it is so much cheaper to have this surgery overseas, I wonder if people really weigh up the risks of doing so.  Even if a surgery is successful, the after care is so important and you can't be hopping on a plane to Thailand every five minutes.

I do have a lot of confidence in my oral-maxillofacial surgeon, took me ages to choose one!  In addition to having a private practice, he teaches at Perth's major public hospital and takes great care to explain everything.  Should the numbness in my jaw persist for more than 6 weeks, I will let you know his understanding of why this has occurred, and also what (if any) solution he proposes.

I must admit, I'm a bit worried tonight about the numb area of my jaw - although there's still no surface sensation the area seems more swollen, painful and hard than in previous days. Although I'm reluctant even to write this (as if writing it will make a difference!), I have a dreadful feeling that the area is abscessed.  It feels just the same as other abscesses I've had in the past.  If it is an abscess, it means that one or more of the implants has failed and I'll be back in hospital tomorrow.   If I may use a common Oz saying - bugger!  I had prophylactic antibiotics through my IV during the surgery, and have been on orals at home, fingers crossed.

I'll ring the surgeon in the morning - he's actually given me his mobile phone number and told me to contact him with any concerns, but it's almost 11pm here and I know he has a 2 week old baby, so I'll leave till the morning.  

It's nice to see that Kazlilly is from the UK and participates in this forum (hello, Kazilly!) - although of course it's not at all nice that these types of injuries are so widespread.  Such a wide geographical spread seems also to indicate that there is not much support or information out there about these types of injuries - something you've already found and are working to address, bless you for that.

Yes, we're a pretty laid back bunch over here.  I've only been to the US once, to New York.  Have to say both my husband and I absolutely loved it, we found the people so friendly and of course there is oodles to see and do - too much for a couple of weeks so we're planning to go back.  We'll be retiring in the UK in a couple of years, back to Liverpool where my husband was from originally.

I hope your day is going well and that you've found at least one thing today to have a really good belly laugh about - even in the most difficult of times, if we can have a laugh then we're doing ok :-)  Best wishes to you and all on the Dental Health forum, we'll talk again.
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Well I just got my braces and i have a numbness odd feeling in my chin. I'm not sure if I'm allergic to the metal or what but someone tell me what I can do to help the pain/ numbness in my chin.
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Hi Everyone!  I'm sorry I have been gone so long - I moved in October and just today I was able to connect my computer - the trials and tribulations of Comcast!  Lol!
I read through the posts - sounds like we have a few new people - welcome!  And to those here that have been around as long as I have - is there anyone?  Lol  - hopefully you are 100%  :)
I have pasted the 18 month mark....not 100%  :(  In a way, I am worse than I was at the year mark - I know no one wants to hear that.  I am not sure why, but since my implant has been finished, I have more icy feelings and annoyance.  I can only attribute this to the fact that for a full year, I did not chew on that side of my mouth - thus not irritating it.  Now I chew on the implant and I swear it just feels like something cold is dripping out of my mouth.  I continue to want to stretch out my lip and it feels like the weirdness will go away - but it doesn't.  
Anyway - no pity party here!  I moved to my dream property!!  I am living the life I always wanted to - God has blessed me and I believe and trust that I am struggling with this issue for some greater good.  Those things that are meant to harm me will work to my greater good.  Peace my friends - find joy in the small things, work to make someone smile.  If you feel alone and afraid - help someone that is struggling and please know that someone on this forum is praying for you!  xoxo
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Beth,
You have that great Aussie spirit which will help you get through the next few weeks.  Be sure to let your surgeon know exactly what it going on.  Inflammation and infection can increase numbness as you may know and hopefully that can be knocked down with antibiotics.  If numbness persists for the next 2-3 weeks, options should be discussed.  As much as you like your surgeon, if your IAN is under compression by an improperly placed implant which does happen, then it won't heal.  So this needs to addressed if your numbness persists once swelling and/or infection goes down.
Heal quickly Beth..
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Soph,
Communicate exactly what you are going through with your dentist.
The only way I know of for your IAN to be damaged based upon braces would be the numbing process with an needle to numb you.  Injecting the nerve can damage it but this is rare.  Hopefully this didn't occur.  If it just happened, you need a bit more time to determine your status.  Stay close to your dentist and let us know what he/she says.
Best of luck.
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Nice to hear from you and glad your move went well but sorry to hear of your continued suffering.
You repeatedly state this is 'God's plan' but I wonder if you consider therapies to reduce your dysesthesia? Personally I don't agree it is God's plan to have you or anybody else suffer but this a difference of opinion on a theological level.

I will share my opinion of your condition if I may because I may very well be in your shoes in another year.  I don't want to suffer long term.  Once I have determined there is little opportunity for the nerve to regenerate in a manner whereby it doesn't communicate pain or discomfort, I will consider intervention at some level.

Your options will be based upon current technology which include:
1. neuropathic meds to reduce pain sensation,
2. therapies to block pain through the nerve. (I am learning more about these options based upon discussion with Dr. Shankland in Ohio.  I will share his thoughts after his response to my recent email.

I hope you aren't in too much discomfort and my best to you.
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Hi!  It is great that you are looking into Dr. Shankland in Ohio - I eagerly await your info on him and his methods!  I am impressed that you are so thorough and so sharing here.

But please, let me clarify something - I really think you have taken some of the things I have written not as they were intended.  I never meant to imply that God wants anyone to suffer - I do not believe this one bit.  It is a mystery why bad things happen to good people - I just meant that God can and will use it to your benefit.  Good can come out of bad - that is what I meant.  

It might be appreciating a beautiful sunset, meeting someone that you would have never known, changing your habits to live a healthier life - many good things can be the result of a negative thing - if you are open to it - I try to be open and encourage those here to be also,

Also, I didn't mean to imply that I am suffering - I am not.  I have no pain - just a persistent icy feeling when eating and general tightness - it is irrating, but it is not bad enough to make me consider medication.  I choose not to focus on this and instead I count my blessings!  

Wishing all here a quick and total healing!  Peace!! xoxo
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You have an interesting philosophy blessed2bme and I suppose it is difficult for anybody to interpret precisely what you have written about God without the elaboration you have just provided. The counterpoint to what you wrote of good coming from bad is...good can come from any circumstance including good as well which is my personal preference FWIW.  But no doubt your particular belief works for you.  What is most important is you say you aren't suffering but rather have an 'irritation' based upon your condition.  I suppose it could  be proposed having an irritation is suffering.  For example, I would say that that my condition at 5.5 months is mostly irritating.  But I believe I am also suffering at some level as this irritation occupies my consciousness and I find my mouth  less comfortable compared to how it used to feel.  I am fussy about how I feel.  I like feeling well.

So this is a good conversation to have as many will choose different paths in terms of what therapies they would consider moving forward.  In my case, I have an appointment with the nerve specialist at Univ of Florida late this month.  I have decided that if I feel no improvement in the next three weeks, I will seek a prescription for neuropathic meds.  This is partly based upon previous discussion when it was confirmed that taking a neuropathic med has no bearing on nerve recovery.  I wanted this confirmation. I am in no physical pain and neuropathic pain for me has mostly subsided however  I am considering two meds based upon discussion with different MD's.  The reason is...I want to feel as good as I possibly can or back to how I used to feel.  So I will try a medication to block what I also consider an annoyance or irritation or what I would generically refer to as suffering on some level.  
Semantics I suppose.

Because we may have a slightly different perspective, its a good conversation to have.
I wish you the best of health.
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I think it is a good conversation to have also and I am glad we cleared that up.  I am so grateful that you are on this board and have been so involved in the search for healing.  Of course, I don't mean that I am happy you are suffering - I just mean that you are a great asset to the forum.

I look forward to hearing about your consultation with the specialist later this month - this could very well be the answer that many of us here have hoped and prayed for.  

Wishing all total health and happiness!  Peace!  xoxo
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Thanks for your kind words.  I appreciate you being here as well and sharing your journey with the forum including keeping this injury in perspective relative to all that life has to offer.

My hope is to learn more and as each of us make an effort to communicate with the medical community, our knowledge of different therapies will grow. Because of our timelines and even extent of injury can be different, I believe it makes sense to develop a roadmap of sorts which maybe slightly different for each of us.  I hope you get to a point where this injury is of no consequence in your life.
Thanks again and be well.
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I never thought I'd participate in a conversation like this again. :)  I had what I've read as my panic moment back in 1998/9.  There was no great google search.  I believe I stumbled upon a site because of altaVista.  

Short older history.  I had my wisdom teeth taken out back then and I ignorantly thought of it as a tooth extraction.  I found myself coming down off of the high of the knocked me out drug, but i noticed the numbness wasn't going away.  I remember even tapping my nose with my finger and feeling the numbness.

OMG did I freak when I woke up the next morning and it was still numb.  I felt horrible for myself despite reading about all the folks with pain associated with this problem.  I was so bummed.  I'd never kiss again or whistle or be able to drink.

Fast forward .. just one > not two >> :) and so I was able to get most of the feeling back X amount of months after, but there was a kind of round'ish patch that I'd bite off a fingernail and bump it up against the skin to sort of go, "whoa.. still can't feel that .. but at least I feel the pressure".

I love going to the dentist for cleanings on that side, "Do your worst!" I would think and i wouldn't flinch at all, but then they'd get to the other side and I'd feel like I should cry. :)

Fast forward > just one.  I noticed that sensations of healing were still coming.  I couldn't remember the last time I'd read a forum or even cared, but I just marveled at the remembrance of people explaining how nerves can figure out how to simulate regeneration even if the regeneration is not there.

Fast forward > to about a year ago when I realized that although I was in the 90th percentile of numbness being gone, that it was indeed all gone.  No more feeling like i was dribbling or water slipping out of my mouth I was healed.

Fast forward > Stop ... This Tuesday.  Pain in the third molar left side that I'd ignored forever.  Molar .. needle.. nerve.. no please :)  Although I wasn't consciously thinking that I can see now, "Ohhhh yeah you were". :)  The pain would flair up when I'd get upset or if I'd chew something hot on that side.

Originally the doc was going to let me go (OS) and then I said something that sort of troubled him and so he examined me further and decided to see what was under the tooth.  Voila!  Broken filling and possible infection.  I spare you the rest up to EXTREME PAIN from the nerve.  It hurt so bad.  13 hours until I was in the chair again.

Not only did we do extraction, but we went for implant beginning procedures as well.  As the novocaine wore off I was like, "uh oh" :)  Since I'm here I bet you've guessed it.

This time however it's my left side.  My lip is numb past the halfway point and all of the other wonderful goodies we've all read about in this thread.  My doctor was looking for the nerve, but didn't see it when he was doing the implant and the implant isn't even as far down as the roots of the tooth.

I feel tingling and I know this won't be as bad as the first time I was participating in this rodeo, but like blessed said, "everything happens for a reason".  I'm so glad I read this thread because I haven't seen anyone who is a 1998-1999 survivor of this. :)  Do I get a card or a gold star? :)

I think the advice I would give is almost as darn close as people have done for almost a decade in this thread.  I will disagree with the agists though.  For those who are looking for data please take that with a grain of (insert X).  There are not enough cases studied in a scientific environment with regards to iAN (we totally didn't use the acronym back then) to prove age means your nerves age slower.

Please don't anyone waste their time trying to prove it to me.  Just like people say they can't prove God here, you can't prove to me that there has been enough proof regarding the study of nerves with regards to iAN to prove they are factually based.

Since you've found this page let me share this with you.  You need hope right now.  Disregard anything negative because if I'd listened to those who diagnosed my recovery probability I'd still be numb on the other side.  Miracles happen a lot more than people give them credit for and trust me having your nerves regenerate or simulate regeneration isn't like parting the Red Sea or finding someone alive after being lost at sea and they are still alive years later.

The pain, depression, saddness, and fear are real though.  I went through them.  I accept my positive words surrounded by so much reality of actual people ranked by age, condition, type of extraction, sex, etc.  All of that has to say something valuable, no?  Yes, it does indeed.

With all of these posts though you have to remember that none of them are you.  You've been up against crazy odds before and you can again get your life back by focusing on using the power of your mind to help in the regeneration of those nerves.  You cannot see what it will do, but I guarantee it can happen.  It might not happen as quickly as you'd like, but I guarantee you it can happen.

Hahaha.. after I said that I felt a little numbness under my lip turn into a tingle from deadness.  My hand to go, that just happened.

I'm back with you all on the road to regeneration and I'm telling you if you've recently found this site please make sure you read that those who may even sound like they are saying, "you may never" or "it may never" or anything that sounds negative that they are not being negative.  They are being realistic.

I'm sort of like a female Willy Wonka who like blessed also believes in God because of the miracles that have happened in my life.  How blessed am I to have this happen to me twice?  Well, until today I wasn't sure, but if I can light a candle of home for those who like me in my panic period are googling for life.  Then I'm happy this happened to me.

There were hours of sadness when I look back at it (boy .. I'm going to keep typing because tingling happened again a little further to the right of the previous tingle) :)

My point is that in retrospect the amount of sad I felt timewise versus the amount of happy positive though I came away with from this experience.  The time doesn't even compare.  You can recover from this and when you put your mind to it and focus on nerve regeneration I'm a living witness to the power of the mind (even during this post).

What was the movie, "Shawshank Redepemtion"  -- 'get busy living or get busy dying' .. I'm suggesting strongly that you tell your nerves to get busy living and then trust it will happen.  If you have a faith you believe in then supercharge it with that and most of all remember to love.

Blessed.. thanks for your posts at the tail end of this.  I was just reading and shaking my head at things I read and I was going to stay out of the "it's your age" talk, but I decided to weigh in with an experienced take on it AND from someone who is back in the pool and still feels like, "ok, what do i have to do tomorrow?" versus "oh, why me".  I've been there, done that, and I've got the t-shirt. :)

Cheers everyone and thanks to one and all for contributing to this VERY important thread.
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Has anyone used a tens unit?  My acupuncturist (who stuck 50 needles in my chin last time) told me to try one.  My mom just happened to have one for different nerve issues, so I am using it for the first time right now.  Who knows!

Crossing my fingers and toes.  This has been a long 15 months!  
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Hi one4love,
Epic post.  On one hand, I am sorry you are here but on the other, what perspective you bring and thank you for placing your important thoughts here to broaden perspective.  I am the science guy in the thread you are perhaps implicitly referring to ;-) clumsily trying to determine some level of cause of and effect i.e.bring reason to the chaos our lives have been thrown into and you are quite right, when it comes to the regeneration of the nerve there as much unknown as known. The medical literature in fact admits this...nerve generation being referred to as 'embryonic'.  The problem with case studies as you say, for every case study there is an example or case as you say that repudiates collective wisdom.  So each of us have to be very careful as you say about drawing any conclusions about who will recover or who 'may' not from this...recovery also being perhaps a matter of degree versus absolute but acceptable.

If I may ask a couple of questions please about your recovery the first time.

And of course you went through the same dark despair many of us have and now you have come away recovered from the first time really a stronger lady with the perspective to get through this next episode which sounds like will be less severe.

If you think back, how long did it take for your nerve to recover?  I couldn't really tell from what you wrote.  Sounds like it was longer than 1 year.  Was it more than 2 or even 3 years?

Did you take any sort of meds along the path of recovery to help you cope if not promote healing?  Did your doctor(s) place you on any neuropathic drug or anti anxiety med at any period of your recovery?

Now I will share a brief story of an encounter I had the other day.  I was out on my bike ride and stopping to refill my water bottles and a couple stopped to ask me for some directions.  The man made a comment about my bike...I have a go fast carbon Tour de France level bike as I am heavy into cycling and like to ride long and fast and I told him the bike was a big contributor if he and his wife was interested in riding faster or farther with less fatigue.  So he asked me my background and I said mechanical engineering and he said he had an undergraduate in chemical engineering and so we had a bit in common.  We talked further and he said he went to grad school and I asked him if he had a PhD in engineering and he said, no, he decided to go to medical school and he had been a surgeon for about 25 years.  Nice guy.  His wife was by his side and conversation was pleasant and easy and I asked him if he knew much about peripheral nerves and he nodded yes.  So I told him my story of my wisdom tooth extraction and related damage to my inferior alveolar nerve and he said he was sorry to hear that and I asked him how long it may take for the nerve to recover.  Exactly as I asked, both the woman and man at the same precise time said in unison....two years.  I was quite surprised.  So I looked at the women who had been mostly listening attentively and I asked, are you a MD as well.  And she nodded yes. :-)  A surgeon.  
Now their story:
The woman went onto say that a few years back she crushed her finger in a door and it required pretty extensive surgery.  This is a women who made her living operating on people and she needed the dexterity of her index finger.  She said it took two years for her to get the feeling back in her finger which she now has.  And then the male doctor told his story.  He said a while back he had an intern give him an injection in his arm.  Because of her lack of skill...not her fault he said as she was inexperienced, the needle hit a vital nerve in his arm and she injected the nerve and it killed it to a degree.  He said he was still recovering from it and neuropathic pain is the 'worst' which many of us know only too well.  I asked him if he took anything for it and he said yes.  He took Gabapentin and he suggested I take it for my mouth...which btw I am considering in the next ensuing weeks having read about this med before.  I asked him if this med slowed him down or affected the other nerves in his body and he said no....it really does target the damaged nerve and he has suffered no side effects.

So I wanted to share this story because not only are these MD's trained to understand the anatomy and recovery of nerves in the body,  they actually experienced injury to their peripheral nerves.

I wish you well in recovery one4love now the second time around which is just remarkable and I am so glad you have come here and shared your story.  I am still going to try and piece together a framework of coping for myself and those suffering as they heal but yes, none of us will fully understand not only the damage mechanism of the nerve...the dental/medical community clearly doesn't by all that come here and no doubt thousands more that don't find this website.... but ability of the body  to restore the nerve as well.  All we can do is cope the best we can and devise the best strategies we can...one of which being the strategy of hope that you are so right about.



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Hi Rachael,
I don't know about the tens unit you mention but want to ask, are you in much discomfort?  If so, can you describe it?
Are you taking any meds or considered taking any meds to help?
Kind Regards
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Thanks Timeheals! :)

I was worried about the way my message would come off.  I'm glad it came across as respectfully as I meant to type it.

That was a great story about who you ran into.  Isn't life cool like that? :)

I really can't tell you how long it took because after a while I forgot.  It could be the two years that I heard, but I just remember going back to work and telling everyone about it.  To keep it lighthearted I remember I'd type smiley faces with a drool.  Like this :-)~

I'm telling you that one, because I laughed out loud about it and two because I can remember when I was like, "i can't do that anymore because I can feel over there."

It comes back so slowly after you acquiesce that it's never going to come pack.  I would still do my routine of pinching or sticking something into it or flossing my teeth for years after and realize I had no feeling.  I really wish I could pinpoint a date, but it just didn't matter after a certain point.  

I do remember that two years later I still had some numbness, but you really do just get over it.  (i am one who didn't suffer pain, only numbness)

After I realized I was one of the lucky ones because I did have signs of healing I sort of checked out of reading the forum I participated on.  It's still funny to think what forums looked like back then.  So I would say longer than 2 years, but after that you just don't realize it.

Feeling kept coming back over a decade though.  I just didn't notice it or I thought, "no way .. because I was told X would happen and this is not a letter this is more like X2Y3Z8... it doesn't make sense"

I was just by chance that i was rubbing a thread on my chin this year that I was like, "wait? did i really just feel that?"  I went over it super soft.. and it was indeed feeling.  So this is like 15 years later.

Yes, it is ironic that I celebrate that moment with what just happened this week. :)  Gotta love destiny! lol

Oh and no, no doc help.  






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Love your attitude one4love,
Yes life is cool based upon wonderful people we meet which makes us tolerate the pain along the way.
Your story is quite remarkable and hopefully your second time around is much easier and shorter lived in terms of recovery.  
Your smiley face is hilarious...love it and everybody here gets it and has been there. :-)_  (mine's on the right side)
Your words are very helpful and Thanks again and heal quickly.

PS: longer term healing is so uncharted in the literature as you know.  I read one report of a TN sufferer....TN is the absolute worse for facial pain who was on neuropathic meds for 10 years and then one day she decided to get  off them to see what would happen and the pain was gone.  No, there is no precise roadmap for this.
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Hello!!  Thank you for that wonderful post and for your timely encouragement!  I am sorry you are back in this nerve limbo, but I know you will make the best of it and now you are being a light for those here.  I am so excited that you had complete healing - not many have reported that after so long. It sounds like your new injury will be much milder and hopefully you will recover very quickly.  
We seem to share the same mindset - get on with your life and count your blessings - thanks for being one of those blessings for me today.  :-)_   I don't know how to get the squiggle drool on my computer, but that sure made me laugh and is exactly how I feel when eating.  Lol  

Timeheals - I LOVE your story about meeting the two doctors - this is exactly what I am referring to when I say God can turn negative things into positive.  I see this as a miracle to give you hope.  I understand that might not be your belief - we don't have to agree on that.  Thank you for sharing that with us - it gives me hope also and uplifts my day.  You are a blessing to me also.  :-)_

Racheal - I don't know what a tens unit is...more info??  

Peace and healing to all!   xoxo
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Understood blessed2bme52,
I believe we all share the grieving for our lost health.  This is part of the suffering.  I would never take issue with any small difference in philosophy.  You are right and we are all the same.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwCykGDEp7M
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You're welcome ! :)

I was inspired by all of you and I am humbled by the nice things you said.  Oh and just because I may write pretty I don't think that I'm getting by on the fact that I'm no different than anyone.

That day that I had EXTREME pain.. there was none of this nice me.  I was sooo not a happy camper.  

Anyhoo.. yes it does seem my recent incident is trying to heal quick.  It's still numb, but not as heavy numb.

Come to think of it that's one of the things I want to share.  What happens at the initial OMG WTF moment you realize the numbness is not going away you also are upset because the numbness also feels like it has a weight to it.  I didn't think about this until now, but I think that's one of the signs that healing is happening.

Over the years it was less about it being numb and more about it being less heavy.  You guys know what I mean?

So like right now the numb is still there, but there's a lot of tingling and I know my nerves are trying to wake up.  It's like a non-stop thing now.  When I posted the other day (or was that yesterday) it was just deadsville, but now it's tingle city.  Including.. the itch! :: shaking my head ::

I was getting my hair done and I was telling my stylist about it being such an extreme itch and she was like, "just scratch it!" and so I told her no because then it would feel worse.  Eventually she convinced me to try.  UGG!! lol..

:-)_  nooope! :-)_

Ok, ok.. I got sidetracked sorry.  My point is as the tingling cray cray continues I just realized that it wasn't as heavy.  I was putting on lip balm yesterday and my lip felt so heavy! Today it's still heavy, but I can feel the lip balm in a different way.  I really apologize if I'm not communicating this well.

If you do get what I'm saying then good because it's a nice thing to remember.  You go from feeling like you have a busted poofy lip to just having a heavy lip, to having a normal lip with no super feeling, to it making it under the lip and the longest time for the feeling to come back was between the chin and lip.

Before I had this happen I was finally rubbing the softest thing i could on my chin (in the former numb area) and it I could feel it. AND THEN here I am

:-)_ will my peeps who get me! :-)_

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I think one of the things sometimes lost in discussion is how different our experience is considering how many symptoms are shared.  For example.  You mentioned you didn't have any pain the first time around and your recovery took years.  There was a lady a while back on here that had an implant improperly installed and she had complete numbness followed by 10 days of pain and the whole thing resolved in 3 months.  Take me.  The first 4 months really I had electric pain so intense in my chin that I felt like jumping from a high place.  It even ran though the base of my tongue and I was tongue tied.  Speaking and eating was excruciating.  Today, at just under 6 months later, I have mostly tightness.  My mouth has healed to point I never though it would get to.  I believe in 1 year, I will be where Starbrite is or very close at 95% or close to fully healed.  Maybe in 2 years, normal or where you got to one4love after a longer period of time.  

Point being the journey isn't even close for some even though we share a very similar experience in many ways.  Because recovery is so slow, doubt creeps in all the time including about our resolve to live with it.  I really struggled a couple of months ago and am much, much less today because I am more healed.  I couldn't even focus on my life 2 months ago and today I get on much better.

So even though you really didn't have any doctor intervention along your path to recovery, I believe many will or perhaps should.  I gutted through the pain but I needed an anti anxiety med sparingly to cope.  I should have gone on a neuropathic med for example because the pain was so intense but I didn't.

Then there will be a small percent sadly with long term pain.  For those with this condition, please listen.  There is help...especially if you are desperate.  Those with Trigeminal Neuralgia face this each day.  Google it if interested...a much worse manifestation of related nerves in the face.

There are therapies for those reading this that are suffering with pain and/or tightness past the 1 year point which looks to be turning into long term.

So our experience isn't exactly the same....some resolve quickly and others are much longer term and may require therapy to cope with pain.
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I was going to remark about how much focusing on time kind of weighs one down, but then I noticed the screen name you chose and so I get that's where you are.

You are where you are because there is something to be learned from time.

I need to think about this more because I am so time averse.  I can not debate it's existence.  I just think using it as a measurement reduces the impact of mind powers.

Everything you're saying speaks of truth.  Differences, better, worse, more time, less time, symptoms, suffering, triumph.  All of those can be associated with time.  Hmmm...

I do want to share that I so hate that you had to experience pain.  To me that hurts the most when people share because we know that pain in our mouths is one of earth's extreme trials.  The thought of impacting the positive experience of eating with the negative of mouth pain.  It just ***** and although I'm empathizing with a past you it feels like now when I read it for what seems like the first time.

Thanks for the food for thought again Time.
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I like your depth of thinking one4love and enjoy your perspective.  My username is somewhat limited in terms of what it portends.  Time doesn't heal per se.  Healing just happens to occur with time and that independent variable of time as you have taught us doesn't correlate to any meaningful studies..  So you are quite right.  Time itself is somewhat incidental in fact.  Healing or lack thereof is the irrefutable truth we each have to live with and pain if a companion,as you mentioned is the worst....closer to the brain, the worse it is and the IAN and lingual nerve are close to the brain.  But TN sufferers have it much worse than us and why it is coined the suicide disease as many have taken their life because of it...unbearable.

Then there is a the subject of suffering which was discussed a couple of posts back.  Suffering on a philosophical level infiltrates our lives in many ways.  I mentioned the great president FDR a few weeks back because he is such a triumph of the human condition.  A man with unfathomable gifts who was stricken with his health and suffered unconscionable pain throughout the last half of this life and couldn't walk a step.  He was athletic and a great dancer the first half of his life.  In the face of his pain and suffering, he went onto being our only four term president.  Many believe he never would have been president without this suffering which gave him a depth of character to understand the human condition that few could.  Prior to his illness he was said to be slightly arrogant because he was blessed with so much and why wouldn't he be?  But as with this, it is humbling to the core and in his case, few things are as bad and yet he rose above it.  This plays into the narrative of what blessed2beme talks about in the context of God and greatness coming from adversity.

But on a tangible level, pain completely ***** :-)_ and the longer it languishes (time) it can either break one down or perhaps develop the ability to cope.

Part of me being here is to promote conversation and discuss options.  I don't want people to suffer.  I want to help if I can.  I am glad you are here and I hope you get back to your best health real soon.
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Great post Time! You humble me greatly.  Again, that truly was a great post.  

Deep too! :)
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hi new to asking questions.but I have had two teeth beside wisdom tooth that was in jaw hing cut out.dentist put stitches in.had those removed. had a pocket in gum were one stitch was set up infection gave antibiotic that worked.Still have lower lip,chin numbness with tingling.just on side were teeth were took out.Feel lip when rubbed across teeth,move lip but numb with tingling and chin numb.feel when touched.when eating food feels odd keep biting lip and feel heat and cold.Is this healing or need to panic?
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Hi,
You may be in for a bumpy ride as most of us have been here, but history is on your side for recovering as most do to a high level with enough time.
If you read back through the posts, the biggest unknown is time.  Some seem to recovery relatively soon and others can take months if not years.  Much too early to know what your path will be.  Next step is to be in constant contact with your dentist or oral surgeon to let them know exactly what your condition is.  If you read back through the posts on this forum you will learn a lot and develop ideas or strategies to cope with this.  You may need meds for the pain for example...or a med if you are feeling anxious as many do.
Heal fast mrslost99

PS: to facilitate healing I strongly suggest you consider taking supplements.  I wrote about this a month or two back.  You want to provide your body with the best nutrients to heal itself....active B complex, Omega 3, Lipoic Acid, multi vitamin....balanced diet...vegetables, protein, no alcohol...may have to break that rule once in a while ;-)...no sugar or salt (if possible)...also a lot of rest and exercise if you can.
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Hi all!

Sorry I haven't posted in a while. Just got caught up on all the posts. Appreciate the discussion, and know that I haven't abandoned the thread! I will be checking back and updating as long as this issue continues for me!

I still have most all the same feelings. But I am slowly but surely noticing every once in a while that...."oh yeah, I sort of forgot about my chin!" This might not be a big deal to some who have never experienced our trials, but I think all here would understand. It can be such a constant never ending struggle in our minds! Ugh! I am trying to stop touching and moving my chin around so much throughout the day.

But I am staying busy still, sending our query letters and looking for a publisher for my children's book, blogging, studying all about health and what to eat, not to eat, etc, raising my 5 children, loving my husband, studying for my pre-nursing class, laundry, dishes, cleaning, etc. etc. etc. and on and on!

I was really glad to hear One4love's testimony that completely healing happened finally for her! Though it sounds like to me it took many many years. At least I can hold on to hope that I won't be like this the rest of my life! I appreciate timeheals60's continued perseverance in researching options (the FDR story has been a great encouragment since you posted that), and blessed2beme's faith. Hope and faith has been the biggest contributor to be actually being able to function and live my life with any enjoyment really.

Off to pick up the kids from school!

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Just a few things to add that I thought of on the drive to pick up my boys from school.

I don't remember if I shared this before. If I did, it has been a while, but seems to fit with One4love's testimony a little. I sliced the side/tip of my finger off on Valentines Day 2011 (What was I doing with a knife and cooking dinner on Valentines Day, you say?! I'm not sure, but I will forever blame my husband for that little mishap! haha!) Anyway....the area was numb and tingly for a few years, but now it really feels completely normal. So a good sign? :)~

Also, I was thinking about the discussion on suffering. This is something I was having a recent friendly discussion over facebook with an agnostic friend. And I do really think I understand his perspective on suffering in this world being a huge stumbling block to faith. I guess that my belief just boils down to what I believe the Bible teaches. Suffering wasn't part of God's original design in creation. Rebellion entered, and the world forever changed. But because of His great love for us, Jesus suffered tremendously on a cross to show us that love and restore our relationship with Him. I believe the Bible teaches that he WILL one day remove suffering and make all things right again. Because of his great suffering for me, I would like to believe that I would be willing to suffer any great loss or trial in this life for Him. This is the faith that allows me to endure my current difficulties with this nerve injury. Not wanting to start an argument or prove anyone wrong or anything like that, just felt compelled to share the hope that I have.

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Thank you for your update!!  It sounds like there is some improvement as you noted that there are times when you forget about your chin and just go on with the rest of your life.  That is where I am at too - if I stay focused on what is important - I don't dwell on the injury.   Really, I think that might be the best advice for those in this long term.  It seems like people either heal quickly (< 6 months) or they learn how to block some of the irritation and just focus on living.  Not to say that we aren't always on a quest for total healing - just saying to enjoy life while you are on the journey.  :)

Thank you also for sharing your faith here.  I think it is an important aspect of getting through this injury.  Honestly, I don't know how I could have endured the early days without my faith.  

Timeheals60 - thanks for your recent post to me - you are truly amazing in your generosity to beliefs that may seem different than your own.  I have nothing but respect for you and I look forward to your future posts.  

Peace and love to all!  xoxo

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I honestly resisted getting in the belief discussion blessed2bme52.  I certainly respect your faith, April's faith and others who are of similar mind.  We could have a very involved discussion about theology and even talk about differences within Christianity...being born again etc not to mention the majority of the world being muslim and other faiths and we know how that it working out. :-)  The greatest mind of modern time is Stephen Hawking and he is an atheist and has studied the universe and theology on a deeper level than most alive.  So there are all different views of God and each is to be respected.

And on the subject of perspective removed from religion or partly at least,, I will give you a counterpoint to those that are suffering or in your words...have a long term irritation. Yes, you can immerse yourself into your belief including justification or rationalization of this injury and/or distract yourself...or...you can take a medication to block your dysesthesia.  I will be at 6 months in a week or so, and that is my plan.  My life now is going pretty well, I naturally distract myself with a lot of activity, but I want my body to feel like it used to before this injury and if lingering pain or abnormal sensation can be blocked with a medication while the nerve continues to heal longer term, I would like to try it.

All the best blessed2bme52 and hopefully your symptoms will resolve soon.
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I am wondering what the side effects for this medication could be?  I am sure you have thoroughly researched them - as much as is available.  I agree that if the side effects are minimal and it would take the dysesthesia away completely - it might be worth it.  Don't for a second think that I am not willing to get rid of this "longterm irritation!"  Lol

To update everyone on my condition - I feel better than last week!  :)  I am currently NOT having the icy dripping feeling everytime I eat.  I have been trying to quantify and zero in on the exact weirdness - this is what I have come up with:

The most affected spot is the inside of my lip and around the gum line of my 2nd, 3rd, and 4th from middle teeth.  I have recently regained more feeling in the gum - but it still isn't normal.  I have total feeling everywhere else, but still a tightness when I move my mouth in unusual ways.  I still have a transfer of feeling when I lightly touch my chin below my lip.  Nothing hurts or is too irritating to be blocked out.  That is the current status - as in the past, it could change at any moment.  

So, would I take medication to get rid of it - maybe - I'd like to know more.   I have not mentioned it before, but I was a  clinical scientist and my husband is a doctor - clearly I have a lot of confidence in medicine.  

Peace and healing my friends - wishing you all a beautiful weekend and a joyful start to the holiday season!  xoxo
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When you do try a nerve medication, I would love to hear the results. My oral surgeon recommended gabapentin. My brother, who is a doctor, recommended trying Lyrica. Right now, the disruption to my life is minimal, so I will wait to try medications until I feel I really have to. My understanding was that these medications would block the pain, but I don't know about the paresthesia being addressed with them or not. If they do work, I think I would probably love to try it!

Have a nice weekend everyone.
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Hello everyone. I am happy to find this website and read your posts. My appreciation to your timeheals60 because you are genuine and full of empathy for people who are suffering in pain. My daughter is on her 16th day post wisdom tooth surgery and yes, she has numbness on her left chin and corner of the lower lip.I took good care of her after surgery and fed her soup and  pineapple juice until she removed the stiches. I read that pineapple helps  a lot to heal damaged tissues On her 14th day,she had her stiches removed. She complained to  her doctor about the numbness . When he pricked her  jaw with  a needle point, she didn't feel anything.The doctor advised her to take a soft brush and mildly massage the area until she feels a tingling- like sensation. He told her to do it everyday .. Aside from the numbness, my concern is about her shots of Dexamethasone . She rcvd 3 and was prescribed another 2  for speedy healing of the gums and nerves . But I read a post in FB that this drug has a very bad side effects .Prolonged use may cause heart attack even to young ones, sterility, damage in the kidney etc. It was written  that even one shot will prevent your body to absorb Calcium for  one month and 2 shots may cause Osteoporosis even for younger patients. I discarded her last 2 vials  and I was very upset why the doctor didn't warn us about the side effects of this drug. Now my daughter is worried that the 3 shots she rcvd may weaken/ damage her bones . She is 32. I  read that many of you here are suffering from post surgery injury to different degree. My heart goes for everyone who suffers . I hope and pray that my daughter will heal soon , likewise to all of you who have to live a daily life in pain and discomfort. I have 2 implants  ( upper front incisors ) but  having read  the danger of implants in the back lower teeth, I guess I will just leave my  empty gums as they are, my  lower 2nd and 3rd molar ,and wisdom tooth  both sides are gone. I am so glad to read your posts, now I know there are other more severe cases than my daughters and I am hopeful that this is  just temporary discomfort for her. My admiration to you timeheals6o .Many thanks for your  information and comforting words. Peace and love.
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To Blessed2beme52 and Aprilchristine:
You both ask really the questions I wish there were already answers to but apparently nobody here with all the IAN injuries recorded on this website has stated with any certainty what neuropathic meds will accomplish and the associated benefits with side affects.  I believe I may take the dive even though at 6 months in less than a week I am getting back more to my old self but still a good distance to go.

Blessed2beme...I am so happy to hear you are feeling better.  As one4love has taught us...some of us with longer term injury to our IAN maybe even on a 2 to 4 year recovery....unknowable.  I do believe I will be a lot better at the year point, but hard to say if I will be fully healed.  Meanwhile, I would like to block the weirdness...tightness and cold translation and really the 'variability' of the damaged nerve brought on my speaking and eating.  But I am probably like you all at a point I really don't need a med.  I honestly needed a medication at the 2-3 month point where I was in a lot of pain but that has subsided.  Since nobody has really experimented on this forum...or they aren't talking about it...with different meds and dosages to know what the benefit and tradefoffs are...it would sure be good if somebody did and I think I am going to take this dive.

But will share something I learned based upon talking to a very brave and enlightened survivor of TN.  He said that each of us are so different and our pain if not nerve discomfort is so different that there is no science to quantify improvement based upon particular meds.  He visited with many neurologists and experimented with many medications and dosages over a five year period just trying to survive day to day.  He said his latest neurologist ended up going with a medication he never used and now administers to many patients.  That is how wide open this is
.  
On Nov 25th, I am going for another consultation and will request a neuropathic med like Gabapentin...or equivalent.  Even if this is the best med for my particular condition of mostly tightness at this point in my recovery...dosage would be key.  I am a pretty tall guy at over 6 feet and 180 lbs and I would likely need a higher dosage than a smaller girl for example.  And then there is drug sensitivity.  Some like the TN sufferer I mentioned respond to a very low dosage.  Some may suffer side effects if going with a higher dosage.  The MD I referred above who was personally using Gabapentin for a needle injury to a nerve in his arm said, he had no discernible side effects.  One of the things that makes this injury so perplexing is our symptoms are slightly different and we may respond to a different dosage or perhaps a given med better than another.
So we need more anecdotal accounts of experience with meds.  On a more homeopathic path, I am taking a pretty large array of vitamins and other supplements  I mentioned earlier to give the nerve the best environment to regenerate.

To AprilChristine:
Both you and Bless2beme ask I believe the signature questions that I don't have an answer to or can find an answer to so far.  All of us aren't in much pain but we have perhaps at times more discomfort in terms of tightness or variable numbness.  For example, sometimes my lip feels normal and other times it almost buzzes with numbness.  Same with my chin.  My thought is a neuropathic med will likely abate this variation by calming the nerve.  The only way we will determine if tightness for example can be relaxed is to take a med and evaluate it.  I plan to try this.  I received an assurance by my MD that taking such a med has no effect on the regeneration of the nerve.  So I would like to be less affected by this injury if possible while the nerve heals which maybe over the next few months or even year period

To LizbethMSh:
You are so kind.  Thank you for your kind words.  There are so many great people here including the two ladies above you and many others I have corresponded with.  Wonderful people living with more discomfort than they deserve.  I am sorry to hear about your daughter.  She is lucky to have such a thoughtful mother and it will be your love that will get her through this.  Yes, I would like to help everybody here and end the suffering tomorrow.  The only way we will minimize suffering is for our group to help one another as much as possible with sharing information including from the medical community.  Please give your daughter assurance that not recovering from this injury is extraordinarily rare.  The percentages are much in her favor that she will recover.  Yes, it may take some time and perhaps even a lot of time.  Be sure to seek medical advice and have her stay close to her dentist for advice in the next few weeks.  If she goes through a lot of pain, consider going on meds short term to get through this difficult period.  If she suffers with anxiety which myself and many have because of this injury, there IS help and it will help her a lot...please read earlier posts on this. Please post with any concerns for your daughter.  Meanwhile your support will get her through this.

My thoughts are with everybody here and heal soon everybody.
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Definition of Neuropathic Pain:
As discussed, our symptoms can and generally are different based upon the extent of injury to the IAN and the timeline of how much we have healed.  

Below is a definition of neuropathic pain perhaps we all can relate to.  This is not specific to the IAN or lingual nerve but peripheral nerves in general:

Patients who have neuropathic pain may report a wide variety of unusual sensations or pain complaints. These may include burning pain, pain radiating into an area of anesthesia, or an absent limb, pulling, drawing or crawling sensations, lancinating explosive pains which may be spontaneous in their origin or induced by mechanical or thermal stimulation.

Above passage was borrowed from the following article and defines the difficulty of treating neuropathic pain or discomfort and identifies different drugs and some of their tradeoffs:

http://www.uiowa.edu/~c116006/neuropathic.html

The 'pulling and drawing' sensation is highly reported on this forum and perhaps the biggest discomfort I have at my present point in recovery.  The electric pain I had prior was many times worse but that has subsided for me thankfully.   So I am curious to see if an anti convulsive med would reduce the tightness in effect by relaxing the nerve...the nerve I believe convulsing on a microscopic level which creates the sensation of tightness.
As the nerve heals, this tension or tightness is reported to generally go away and if a med exists to feel more normal during the healing process, that would be a great path to seek provided a dosage could be determined without side effects.

Most of us don't want to go on any sort of med.  I don't take a single med currently and have never my entire life.  But...I have never been through anything like this and I would like to eliminate if not reduce the tightness in my chin if I could and why I am considering it.

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Hi all,
It's been a while since I last posted - life has been crazy busy. Here's my situation in brief. I had my lower wisdom teeth extracted last May.  I had a lot of pain and could not feel my lower lip and chin. After about a month I felt some improvement. 6 months later I have a lot of feeling back - about 75% and I am not in any pain. Yet I have the uncomfortable tightness in the chin and lower teeth that many of you are experiencing. During the day when I am busy, I pay little mind to it.  But by nighttime, I feel drained and sometimes a sense of despair that this will never go away. But I am grateful to have gotten to this point where I can lead a functional life.

Has anyone found acupuncture to help with the tightness? It is something I thought about trying.
Stay strong,
Rosalie
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Hi Rosa,
Nice to hear from you.  As I read your post, I would say it is 'exactly' where I am at.  I too had my wisdom tooth extracted in May and my symptoms and recovery has been identical to yours.  Also Kazlilly had her IAN injected with a needle accidentally in May based upon a routine dental procedure and her recovery is the same as ours.  It is very hard to look forward, but look how far we have come.  I have to believe in another 6 months to 1 year we will be very close to full recovery...but only speculation.  If you have a chance, read through Starbrite's recovery....she posted monthly for over 1 year.  We are on the same trajectory I believe and she was having breakthroughs at 8 months, 1 year and later and is pretty close to fully recovered.
Heal fast and good to hear from you.  Be sure to come back and let us know how you are doing.
Best Regards
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hello everyone,

I Have not posted in a while but I will give a quick update on my situation. It has been iver 4 months since my surgery and time goes on. I would say I am not fully healed but at about 85 % however would like to be fully healed like evryone else!

I don't know what will happen and if I will get any more healing all I can do is hope. What I feel now is only a very slight numbness in a little section. I can notice this when I move my mouth around. Other than that I have normal feeling. But when I pull my bad side of the lip it does feel a little different and hurts unlike my good side.

Anyways good luck to everyone
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Hi everyone
I haven't posted for a  while but thought I would just update on my injury.  It is 6 months since the injection caused the injury.  I think there has been some change over the months and think I am about 75% ok now, but I can see this is a very slow healing process.  the left lip and chin are still a bit numb but most of the sensations are back now but there is the pulling that most suffer from when moving the mouth, I have pins and needles on the inside of the lip and the lip is very sensitive to touch etc.  When i drink something cold this radiates down the lip and chin which can be quite alarming.  I am interested in acupuncture but that's as far as I have got with it.  I am also considering  trying Gabapentin to see if that eases the tightness.  Welcome to the newbies to the site, albeit unfortunate but at least we all know what we are going through.

Take care everyone
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i had my lower right wisdom tooth pulled on thursday the 13th... it took them 2 hours to extract it! it had 8 days today and i am still in great pain... my chin, lower lip and some teeth/gums are still numb. my ear is killing me and i think im dying! :( not really ( i hope not) but i feel awful!! also my right arm is like numb or feels weird or something
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Hi skywings,
First 2 weeks can be tough.   Hope you have suitable meds for the pain and are getting a lot of rest.
Be sure to stay in contact with your dentist and let him know your status.
Feel free to ask any questions you are concerned about as we have been there.

You have a lot of support here and we wish you the best in your recovery.
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Hi - welcome.  I'm sorry you are struggling with this issue.  You are in the early stages and MANY people recover very quickly.  I will hope and pray you are one of them.  The pain is certainly the worst at the beginning - I promise it will get better - hang in there - we are here for you!  :)

Good to hear from those with recent updates - it sounds like everyone is progressing to some extent - it can take a while.  My own recovery has progressed slightly even since my last post.  I have a habit of biting the inside of my lip - it is an intentional gentle bite, not a hard painful bite.  Well, I actually use it to determine if there is an improvement in sensation, and this weekend there was an improvement!  I start at the corner of my mouth and bite slowly toward the middle - it actually feels totally normal at the corner - no weird sensation - and I can bite a bit toward the center and it feels normal!  Woohoo!!  I am still healing - past the 19 month mark and there is healing!!  

Hope and prayers to you all - Peace!!  xoxo
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Good luck tomorrow!!  I am so excited for you - I hope and pray that it will answer some of your (our) questions and it will further the knowledge on the treatment of this injury.  Can't wait to hear how it goes!!  :)
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Thank you for the well wishes bless2bme52.  I sure appreciate your posts and so glad to hear about your improvement.  Couldn't happen to a nicer lady I will add.  I tried to describe the very thing you mentioned a while back as it stuck with me as a means to evaluate improvement.  I believe I am where you were at a while back.  Trying your technique which I too use as indelicately as it sounds...sucking on my lip to evaluate the status of the nerve...the way I describe it is....it feels let's see...awful? :-)...crusty or wire-y...no words to describe it really.  Obviously not healed yet. :-)  By contrast you will laugh...in the morning when I just wake up after my mouth has been sleeping...I quickly do the lip suck test and guess what?...pretty close to normal.  So when the nerve is a sleep or un-agitated....the nerve and mouth for that matter feels closer to normal.  During the morning and more mouth movement yields the weirdness often described.  If you are beyond this point where your nerve doesn't get agitated to create this discomfort even during talking and eating...I say horray!...fantastic news. I am so happy for you and gives each of us hope who are suffering longer term.

I am almost used to this discomfort but every day if not hour I wish it would go away. :-)  So tomorrow I ask about meds to 'maybe' quiet the nerve down to the level It is at when I just wake up.  Guess will see and will be sure to share my findings.

I will also have more to add about Dr. Shankland who has not responded to my second email with more difficult if not more probing questions.  I suppose his silence is somewhat telling as well and will try to draw some conclusions when I make my next entry.

Congrat blessed2bme52!!  Now go out and celebrate. :-)
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Hey guys,

Here's an update.  Still numb. :)~

The numbness is going away slowly ... as expected.  I can now feel the back of my gums on most teeth and when using my makeup brush I get a freaking CRAZY wicked itch where I cannot scratch and feel it make a difference.

Things are beginning to accelerate, but in the accelerate we all know as "that's better than yesterday, but in no way is it better than it was before this happened."

I was thinking about something today.  You know, since for the majority of us this is a temporary thing.  Temporary meaning it's not for life.  We get a rare look at something that most don't get.  We get to see what it's like to be permanently impacted by something as slow healing as a lip and gums.  It forces us to have a different perspective on time.

For those who are just having this OMG, WTF happened moment I am telling you as a person who has now had this happen twice on both sides of my mouth (15 years apart) that the second time (lol) is way easier! :)~   Is it fun? No!  Chewing into my lip bites and not being able to bite down like knowing I'm not going to chew my lip or bite into it is not fun at all.  However I have a perspective.  "It won't last forever."

That perspective is important because how you treat people while you're going through this is who you really are.  It's not anyone's fault (usually) but it is a circumstance of your life.  Please remember that.  

We didn't lose a leg, we didn't get told we are going to die.  We are experiencing a tragic event that heals.  Again, it bites that it is happening.  Before you tell me to shut up or flip me off, don't forget this is my second time around, so give me some love here. :)~  

I get the panic.  I get the constant pinching and feeling your chin all the time.  I get the "omg.. I can't tell if there's something on my face" wipes.  I get the fat lip because you've bitten into it.

It will pass, but how you react to this and people around you won't pass in your mind.  Regret is the one of the only things we don't ever live past.  Remember that and know from a repeat numbed lip person that it's easier the second time. :)~  I pray none of you have to experience this twice, but if you do .. omg! is it so much easier.

Cheers and I promise to keep you guys updated!!!!

#oneloe
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Avatar_m_tn
If there is a silver lining, and many of us strain real hard to see it :-) the silver lining to this daunting rain cloud is just as you write one4love.  I see the positive you write about and this is something that blessed2beme has written about.  A bad thing, albeit a temporary but a lingering bad thing, happening to good people gives broader perspective and greater humility and empathy to those that suffer that they will in turn share with their fellow man.  Adversity does build character without question.  You are an example one4love.  Your circumstance which brought us here which is our good fortune is what give you not only your perspective but us as well.
On this forum there are many really good people that share their insight. But  who understand suffering associated with this better than someone that has had this misfortune not once but twice?...a statistical occurrence that can't even be calculated it is so remote.  And yes, this is passing.  But it stays around long enough to give each us of serious doubt.  So we not only have pity for ourselves but its a lot easier now to understand the pain of others and be less quick to judge why so many see things differently.  The simple reality is we don't walk in the same shoes.  As a previously healthy man, I really never understood pain and suffering until now.  And then there are life altering events that don't pass with time as you state.  Those would be so much harder to accept and we have been fortunately spared of..

All said, I hope your second round one4love, passes quickly.  I will tell you at 6 months, my mouth tends to feel a bit different each day if not week but I still have a long way to go and this journey is made easier by you and others that have shared their path.

PS: on a tangible level, I would like to share a test I perform everyday...or most days I think about it.  When I take a shower I compare both sides of my chin and lip with the shower head up close.  In the very early days when I had numbness, of course the shower head couldn't be felt at all and I was waiting for the day I could feel the force of the water on my injured side and that day came about 1 month after my IAN injury.  Then for me came the long battle with pain...about 3 solid months of neuropathic electric pain as sensation returned to gums, chip and lip.  Resuming the shower test a couple of months ago, I have gone from a pretty intense sensation on the injured side...a hypersensitivity when the water would strike....to each day or week a more normal feeling.  Its not normal at this point.  But basically the nerve with time is quieting down and it becoming less agitated when stimulated.  It is healing albeit slowly.  So for those looking for a means of tracking the change of their nerve which is very difficult to quantify as sensation is very difficult to even define, use this test from the beginning.  You may want to suspend this method during the pain phase of the healing process if you go through it like I did and some do not.  Fortunately pain for me has largely passed.  The nerve does become agitated with motion still but in the early days after breaking out of numbness, I could barely eat or speak the pain was so intense.  I am so grateful I have recovered from this dreadful and scary period and anybody reading this going through this, you will too.

I will share a last bit of positive with each of you that maybe on a tread mill called life.  We don't have to be.  There are a couple of ways of looking at this.  Aprilchristine for example threw herself into a very intense schedule of accomplishment to no doubt help distract from the mental and physical pain of this injury.  Me?  I find the nerve bugs me less when I am doing things I enjoy doing the most.  So what I have done is taken a year vacation of sorts.  Not a traditional year off, but rather I have rearranged my life to do the things I enjoy doing the most which make me the happiest.   This is my best medicine for coping with the adversity of this injury.  Good offsets bad effectively.  Yes, as I get closer to normal, I will no doubt rejoin the legion and get back on the treadmill but right now I say ride the metaphorical wave while the surfs up. :-)  I should have been a surfer anyway. :-)  Cheers to all.


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Hi everyone!

So sorry for not posting here in awhile. I have been so busy with work and life in general, and I guess the less you hear from me, the better since it means my nerve damage is not on my mind as much anymore ;)

However, I do always want to check in and see how everyone is doing. I will be two years out this February and while I am doing very well, I still have those days where I stop and think, 'will this truly ever go away?' I am still noticing break throughs every once in awhile though so this does continue to heal even after so many months. I cannot stress that enough!

I still feel tightness in the middle of my chin and the lower part of my teeth, all in the same middle spot. I remember my doctor telling me that this will  heal like a coin, so it originally was a silver dollar (all numb) and then it will slowly just get smaller and smaller until it gets to the size of a dime and then eventually be fully healed. I have to say, that's pretty much how it seems to be working. The surrounding areas are almost 100% back to normal, it's just the very middle that is still causing an "issue" for me. I really go about my daily life now though barely thinking of it. It's only when I truly sit alone and move my mouth around when I notice that things are not all correct yet.

I've mentioned this in a past post how I had a very prominent plastic surgeon who has peripheral nerve damage himself, and also works with patients who have had it happen, and he said 3 YEARS is what it takes to be fully healed so I'm sticking to that number :)

I hope everyone is feeling better and please do go back and read what I wrote during my first year. It was extremely difficult, but I am happy and lucky to have at least gotten to the point I am at now. Of course I hope it's 100% normal again someday, but I cannot really complain as to how far I have come.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi Everyone,

I have not posted on this site in a few months.  I hope everyone is on the road to recovery and not in much pain.  As for me, I was 16 months on November 25.   I am still at about 80%.  I have good days and I have bad days.  Today is a bad day.  My lip constantly tingles and hurts.  I had to take 4 Motrin today just to get rid of the pain.  When I talk a lot, it makes it worse.  My dentist says that as long as it is hurting and tingling; the feeling will return.  I am praying for a miracle for all of us!

Happy Holidays to everyone!
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Avatar_m_tn
Hello,

I have just seen this great forum. Have an IAN injury following wisdom teeth surgery eleven weeks ago. Am also experiencing pain on touch and extreme tightness on motion. Am trying neuropathic meds to no avail yet.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi,
To me, at 1 year and 4 months with lingering pain from this injury...you are a candidate for neuropathic meds.  Have you considered this option?  Motrin isn't really effective for neuropathic pain as the pain mechanism is different that other pain induced trauma.

I have just started Gabapentin yesterday and am very slowly ramping up as advised my MD.  I am taking this really only a trial basis because I have achieved a fair amount of healing since my injury 6.5 months ago. However, I believe I still have a way to go..can't even quantify it...30%?...and if a med exists that will make my mouth more normal, I would like to try it.  The lingering affect of this injury for me is discomfort due to tightness and increased numbness or nerve agitation due to eating and speaking aka jaw motion.  So I am curious if Gabapentin...the go to med for neuropathic pain...will alleviate some of this discomfort.

Tightness is the overwhelming long term symptom expressed on this forum due to an IAN injury and it would be most helpful if somebody through trail and error could identify a med that would relax the nerve's tendency to get tight.  With all the people injured here, I haven't read a single account  identifying a med that will reduce tightness....much of the reason rooted in many with this injury haven't taken meds to alleviate their discomfort...which I find somewhat surprising I will add.

My best to you omgthispain and will be sure to share my experience in the ensuing weeks with Gabapentin.
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Hi to everyone and also to Bethiam, sorry I didn't reply to you earlier, but yes it is amazing what a wide net this forum covers.  Such a small world - my daughter goes to Liverpool University and note you mentioned that you may retire there as your husband is from there.  Welcome Articwater, not the best reason for joining a forum but at least we are here for one another.  It is over 6 months since a block injection for a filling  caused my IAN injury and things have improved since the early days, but I still have hypersensitivity on my bottom left lip and tightness in that part of the lip and about half of chin on the left side.  Things might be easing off a little, but this is such a slow healing injury that it is difficult to quantify.  I am thinking about using Gabapentin for pain/irritation.  

Unless you have suffered from this type of injury, you wouldn't have a clue what it entails and that is why we are here for one another because we understand what we are going through.  Not easy, but I believe it does get better with time and patience.

Good luck to everyone and continue to heal.
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Hey everyone,

Just thought I would throw myself into the conversation.

Had all for wisdom's pulled but didn't have anything wrong with them. just thought that they should come out now instead of later just to make sure nothing gets messed up.

About a week after the surgery I noticed that my bottom right lip was numb/tingly and my bottom right teeth just hurt, all the time. I went back to the dentist and he knew exactly what was happening. literally was able to explain the 3 things that could be going on right now and the difference between them. The first is just a lot of pain on the whole area all the time (nerve is severely damaged), which I don't have. The 2nd was no feeling at all (severed nerve)

The 3rd was small pain with numbness/tingling, which I have. It's a good sign, It means that I will heal. About 2 weeks after the tingling went away and only a small portion of my lip is numb, which is probably permanent, but at least It doesn't hurt. My teeth on the other hand still hurt.

He basically told me that the numb parts will probably never heal, the parts that tingle and are in pain will heal but will take a long time, and possibly more surgery. He has only had one patient that took longer than 6 months to heal and they had to use LYRICA, after which she was healed in under 3 months. He had to do surgery to correct a few things for other people after he discovered the nerve was being pushed on by stuff, afterwards they healed within weeks.

I take B6 B12 and Niacin everyday which is included in my multivitamin pack I take. Its GNC Ultra Mega Green and I feel that This has helped me a lot. The pain in my teeth is about half of what It was before. i was at 500mg acetaminophen and 400mg ibuprofen every 3 hours and am now down to the same dose only 2 times a day at most and only when I have used my mouth A LOT.

i hope this helps people mentally and physically. Pain is good, It ***** but its good. I'm going on a month and a half and am feeling good!
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi,
Welcome to the forum.  What you write seems to conflict with what your dentist told you.  Maybe you could clarify.  You wrote: He said that numb will probably never heal which btw, is patently false...people come here with numb parts that do heal...lots of people...even some who have been numb for over a year (accounts you can read on this forum).  A lot of my numb parts have healed as well.  Now if what you meant to write...that somebody with a completely severed IAN who is numb will never heal, this is correct.  However, this isn't true either with surgical intervention. The IAN can be reconnected with surgery which generally will manifest improvement albeit it may not be 100%.  Then you went on to write that  "small pain with numbness/tingling, which I (you) have. "It's a good sign, It means that I will heal."  Well first you said that numbness will never heal then you wrote tingling plus numbness is a good sign.  Truth is, the dentist injured your nerve and so tingling and numbness in the absolute sense is not a good sign.  But, is sounds as though by your description...you said you are doing well etc, that the good news for you  is, perhaps your dentist did not injury the IAN 'severely'.  One of the issues here as many frantically look for answers is...the reality is, our nerve injuries are not the same.  Some are lightly injured and resolve in weeks if or less than 3 months.  They go quietly and gratefully.  Then there are others here with greater injury to the IAN that languish longer term.  Some well over a year and into 2 years and a smaller percentage beyond this period.  The only way btw this can be deduced because we are still in the stone age of dentistry...(there are no machines that can reliably determine nerve condition on the molecular level where nerve impulse transmission occurs)....is by the symptoms of each patient as they report.
I am hopeful you fully heal within a 3 month period.  If you came out of complete numbness very quickly and have experienced little pain and you say you feel good, then I would say you have a very good chance.

Thanks for sharing the info on Lyrica and other supplements.  This is an area that needs further reporting for those suffering longer term.  For example about ten days ago I started a regiment of Gabapentin and am up to 300mg 2 x's a day...will be ramping to 3 x's a day in less than a week.  Gabapentin has a 'kick in' period and waiting for this to occur.  I maybe getting some slight relief already...or....my nerve continues to heal...hard to differentiate.  To report on my status about 1 week shy of 7 months, I will say my mouth continues to change.  I can only say that some days this change doesn't feel positive. :-)  But others it does.  I can only rationalize this as...the nerve continues to grow and deviate in status from its previously injured state and the brain hasn't adjusted to this change.  This results in an alteration in sensation.  I believe normal is by definition...when the nerve continues to grow...which btw it does throughout our lives...and change in nerve growth is imperceptibly small relative to what the brain can perceive relative to how the nerve was previously.  This is by definition is  healing or healed.  The nerve no longer changes from how it was previously.  The brain doesn't like change and can't separate damaged tissue from a damaged nerve.  So as long as your lip/chin/gum continues to change and still aren't fully healed, the nerve is still progressing.  My take trying to make sense of a seemingly senseless injury.

Heal fast everybody.
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Avatar_m_tn
Due diligence when it comes to preventing injury to the IAN?  No such thing.

And now time for a mini rant.  If anybody here really questions the efficacy or veracity...or lets call it 'due diligence' based upon 'so called' medical standards or protocols of the medical community, I have good proof that this is simply  farcical.  Procedures oral surgeons base their operations on are highly flawed if not variable or even non existent.  These are pretty big words so I have to produce proof.  Many here may believe that IAN injuries occur because dentists or oral surgeons do not precisely agree on established protocols taught in dental school.  No.  Long time dentists can't even agree on best practice based upon the experience of many procedures  

What better proof than a number of dentists/oral surgeons arguing on line about best practice when it comes to preventing sadly common but life altering IAN damage during dental implant surgery?  The uptake is...don't be a little afraid, be VERY afraid.  Reading this is tantamount to an assemblage of middle school boys bickering about the best way to build a tree fort. Only we are talking about the mental and physical health of people's lives...likely thousands throughout the world.  These are extremely well trained men and women who are MD's and long term dentists who have thousands of implant procedures under their belts and they can't agree on the best method of preventing IAN injuries.  How do you feel about these people holding the key to your life moving forward and not having a lock solid grasp on procedure?   Outrage?  You bet.  Irresponsible and unconscionable is the bottom line.

Have a read:
http://www.osseonews.com/penetration-of-the-inferior-alveolar-nerve-thoughts-on-protocols/

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If anybody here would like to have a discussion about what they were arguing about and 'why it is so critical to injuring the IAN' and why what a couple of dentists/oral surgeons publically stated about procedure is both outrageous if not immoral, I would like to have that discussion and we should have it so that everybody really understands what is going on.

This is particularly relevant if anybody here is considering a dental implant procedure or perhaps had their IAN damaged due to lack of so called best practice bordering on mal practice.
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re: Gabapentin

Just wanted to update everybody on the status of this med.  For me at least it didn't work.  I started almost 2 weeks ago and after much soul searching about wondering if the drug was helping or hindering...gradually increasing dosage to 600 mg/day,  I believe if anything, it actually aggravates my dysesthesia.  No placebo either. :-) So, I am going off of it slowly as instructed if it didn't work out.

I suppose this isn't a revelation. Nobody here has reported much success with Gabapentin relative to decreased tightness.  The benefit of neuropathic meds based upon anti-convulsive properties is to mitigate pain.  In the classic sense, fortunately my pain has abated after early months of agonizing pain. I am left with tightness and abnormal sensation or a sense the nerve gets aggravated with talking and eating and heightened cold sensitivity.  I am hopeful of course this lessens over time and improves with more healing although for me, this may be a very long period of time.

The one side effect of Gabapentin at 600mg is I feel perhaps a bit more relaxed but likely a hint more fatigued at the end of the day more than anything.  Fatigue is a reported side effect.  I am not a guy prone to fatigue and so this is kind of unusual if not important to me, but I would have lived with a slight edge off my energy level if Gabapentin would help the tightness in my chin area which it does not...at least for me.  

So wanted to share this result as some have asked me privately about whether its helping.

I wish each of you grace as you recover.
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