What can cause my face to burn in pain after dental work?

Jeffrey A. Brown, MD
Dental work or nasal surgery can spark or “kindle” a unique kind of pain that comes from the nerve to your face and not from your teeth or jaw. This “neuropathic” pain typically has electrical quality to it and does not respond to anti-inflammatory medicines or traditional pain medicines. The cause is thought to be a kind of “short circuit” of the nerve caused by an artery or vein pulsating against the nerve near the brainstem, the problem is not in your face, jaw or teeth. The pain may be alleviated by a medicine that is also used to treat seizures. It works by slowing electrical conduction in the nerve. To be sure of the cause, you may want to see a neurologist or neurosurgeon who has experience in treating facial nerve pain.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.