Local Anesthetic (“Novocaine”)
Local anesthetics are used to “numb” an area of the mouth getting treatment. Not all procedures require local anesthetic. Some dental procedures can be completed without local anesthetic or nitrous oxide.
Following local anesthetic, Dr. Mann has three rules:
- Supervise closely to make sure your child does not bite, chew or scratch the areas that are numb for the next three hours. A child can cause trauma to the area without realizing it because of the numbness. If your child does bite his/her lip, cheek or tongue, place ice on the area and call the office. There is no oral antibiotic for this type of injury. It will heal up quite nicely without the use of antibiotics.
- If you would like to give your child something to eat, choose soft foods that do not require chewing such as: yogurt, ice cream, soup, applesauce, pudding, etc.
- “Numb” is what grown-ups call that strange, tingly, rubbery feeling. Young children are not familiar with that word and may say “it hurts” instead. Reassure your child that this feeling is temporary and will go away, and that their mouth is “sleeping” and needs time to wake up. Some children feel better when they see themselves in a mirror to understand that they look the same, even though their mouth feels very different.