Nerve Damage After Wisdom Tooth Extraction

Wisdom tooth extraction is a routine dental procedure performed to alleviate pain, prevent complications, and improve overall health. While the majority of patients experience a smooth recovery, some individuals may encounter an unexpected complication, nerve damage. The proximity of third molars to crucial nerves in the jaw increases the risk of injury during extraction, leading to sensory disturbances in the lips, tongue, or cheeks. 

This phenomenon, though uncommon, can pose challenges for patients, affecting their daily activities. When you reach out to your dedicated dental specialist in Escondido, be it for impacted wisdom teeth removal or another situation that requires extraction of third molars, understanding the causes, symptoms, and potential interventions for nerve damage post-extraction is essential in navigating this aspect of recovery.  

How long does dental nerve damage take to heal

How long does dental nerve damage take to heal?

While dental nerve damage is not a common complication, it can significantly affect the patient’s daily life and well-being. Let’s explore the crucial facts regarding nerve damage.


Nerve damage can occur due to various reasons. The complex root structure of wisdom teeth sometimes intertwines with nearby nerves, making separation challenging. Additionally, the surgical instruments used during extraction may inadvertently injure nerves, leading to sensory issues. 

The inferior alveolar nerve, responsible for sensation in the lower jaw, and the lingual nerve, which provides sensation to the tongue, are particularly susceptible to damage during the procedure. Understanding these potential causes is essential for both dental professionals and patients, as it lays in the groundwork for preventive measures and informed decision-making. 


Recognizing the symptoms of nerve damage after the extraction is crucial for timely intervention. Patients may experience tingling, numbness, or a “pins and needles” sensation in the affected area. Altered taste perception and difficulty moving the tongue or lips can also indicate nerve impairment. 

While these symptoms are often temporary, persisting issues may require further evaluation and management. Early identification of nerve damage symptoms allows for proactive measures to minimize long-term consequences and improve the chances of a full recovery. 

Recovery and healing time

The duration of recovery varies from person to person. In many cases, mild sensory disturbances resolve on their own within a few weeks to months as the nerves undergo natural healing. However, severe cases may necessitate specialized treatment, such as medications to manage pain and promote nerve regeneration. 

Physical therapy exercises designed to stimulate nerve function and improve muscle control may also be recommended. Regular follow-up appointments with the oral surgeon or dentist are crucial to monitor progress and adjust the treatment plan as needed. 

Postoperative care and prevention strategies

Beyond understanding the causes, symptoms, and recovery timelines, postoperative care plays a pivotal role in minimizing the risk of complications. Following the prescribed aftercare instructions provided by the oral surgeon or dentist is essential for a successful recovery. Patients should adhere to guidelines such as avoiding vigorous rinsing, refraining from consuming hot or spicy foods, and avoiding activities that could potentially irritate the surgical site.

Moreover, maintaining proper oral hygiene through gentle brushing and avoiding tobacco contributes to a healthier healing environment. 

Where in Escondido can I get a safe impacted wisdom teeth removal

Where in Escondido can I get a safe impacted wisdom teeth removal?

Whether you’re afraid of undergoing wisdom teeth extraction, you’re wondering about main reasons for emergency removal, or not sure how simple and surgical extraction differ, Temecula Dental Implants & Oral Surgery is the trusted team you can rely on. We’ll make sure you feel comfortable and safe every step of the way. Whether you reside in Escondido or anywhere else across the region, get in touch with us today and rest easy knowing that your oral health is in the safe and experienced hands of Dr. Tsvetov!