3 Unusual Reasons for Facial Numbness

While most people experience an occasional twinge or two, persistent numbness, tingling, or facial twitching may warrant the medical expertise of neurological services and treatment. Common causes of facial numbness include neck problems, Bell's palsy, and stroke, however, there are other, less common causes for numbness. Here are three unusual reasons for facial numbness, and what you can do about them:

Too Much Vitamin B12

While vitamin and mineral supplements are generally considered safe, taking large doses may affect your neurological system. If taken in high amounts, vitamin B12 may lead to unusual sensations in the facial area and other parts of the body.

Vitamin B12 can lead to neurotoxicity which can raise the risk for numbness, tingling, and in certain cases, painful neuralgia. While the effects of vitamin B12 toxicity generally subside after a few weeks, it can take months or even years before facial symptoms completely resolve. In rare cases B12 nerve damage can be permanent. If you develop facial numbness as a result of too much vitamin B12, your doctor may refer you to a neurologist for further evaluation and treatment.

Abscessed Tooth

Infected teeth, or abscesses, typically cause throbbing toothaches, gum inflammation, a bad taste in the mouth, and drainage, In some cases, pain is absent, which may be the result of extensive damage to the affected tooth's nerve.

An abscessed tooth, especially if it is one of the top molars, may cause inflammation or damage to one of the cranial nerves. The cranial nerve that is sometimes affected by dental infections is the facial nerve. Eating foods rich in magnesium or taking magnesium supplements can help calm inflamed facial nerves, however, before taking dietary supplements, speak with your health care provider.

If you have facial nerve damage, you may experience numbness and tingling sensations in your cheek and chin, as well as burning sensations. To help prevent a dental abscess and subsequent facial nerve damage, see your dentist at the first sign of tooth pain, drainage, bleeding, or a bad taste in your mouth when biting down.

Sinus Infection

Sinus infections often lead to extreme nasal congestion and inflamed sinus cavities. The inflammation can be so extreme that pressure is placed upon the nerves and blood vessels in the face and eye areas. If you develop nasal congestion, headache, fever, and discolored nasal secretions, see your doctor as soon as possible.

These symptoms may be associated with a severe bacterial infection of the sinuses, and if not treated quickly with a full course of oral antibiotics, may lead to facial nerve involvement. Once the facial nerve has been affected by infection, numbness, searing pain, tingling, and even severe facial itching can develop. 

If you experience facial numbness or any other abnormal sensations in your face, see your doctor. The sooner the cause is recognized and treated, the less likely you will be to experience long-term or permanent nerve damage. Learn more through resources like http://www.neurologist-losangeles.com.

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