Many people worry about getting their mouths numbed at the dentist. Numbness means you can’t feel anything. In dentistry, anesthesia is used to make you numb by putting medicine near some nerves. This stops you from feeling pain or discomfort during the treatment.

But once your procedure is done, you probably can’t help but think, “How long does it take for dental anesthesia to wear off?” so you can eat without biting your tongue or cheek.

Types of Dental Anesthesia

Different types of numbing medicine are used in dentistry, and which one you get depends on a few things, like how complicated your dental work is, how healthy you are, and how comfortable you feel. When you go to a dental surgeon in Houston, you might get one of these types of anesthesia:

  • Local Anesthesia: This is the most common numbing medicine used in dentistry. It’s applied directly to the area that needs to be numb.
  • Sedation: means using medicine to help patients stay calm during treatment. Sedation can be light, medium, or deep, and it can be given through breathing in, taking pills, or through a needle in the vein.
  • General Anesthesia: This is for more complicated procedures or people very nervous about dental work. It makes you unconscious, so you won’t feel pain while the dentist works.

How to Make Local Anesthesia Wear Off Faster?

Local anesthesia normally takes only 1-2 hours to wear off, but your face, lips, and tongue can remain sensation-less for 3-5 hours. This can be unpleasant if you’re trying to return to your usual activities right after your appointment.

Give it time. The numb feeling will go away on its own over time. But if you want to speed things up, the following are some things you can try at home.

  • Massage Your Skin
    If there’s no swelling, use a warm cloth to increase blood flow to the area. You can gently massage your lips to warm them and improve blood flow. Remember to wash your hands before and after touching your lips, mouth, or face.
  • Get Moving
    Ask your dentist if it’s okay to exercise after dental work. Walking or jumping jacks can help reduce numbness naturally by boosting blood flow. This helps move the numbing medicine away from where it was injected.
  • Take a Rest
    While being active can help, sometimes relaxing and taking a nap is good. Falling asleep can distract you from feeling numb and help the anesthesia wear off.
  • Ask for More Medicine
    Some dentists can give you another shot to reverse the effects of the anesthesia. This can make the numbness go away faster, but it might cost extra.
  • Be Patient
    Everyone’s different, so how long you stay numb can vary. Your size, weight, and how fast your body works can all affect it. Also, where you got the dental work done matters; the lower jaw controls feeling in more areas of your face, so it might take longer for the numbness to go away there.

Final Takeaway

Dental anesthesia motivates people to get their dental work done because they believe it will make the procedure pain-free. However, “how long does it take for dental anesthesia to wear off” is a big concern.

If the numbness persists for a long time and is accompanied by bleeding or pain, call your dentist right away. Visit Dr. Ahmad Millwala at Vintage Oral Surgery. Our board-certified Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon is experienced in managing dental anesthesia. Call us at (281) 800-8852 to book an appointment.

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