Living with Orofacial Pain
>> Some patient testimonials
The sensory nerve (Trigeminal nerve= three twins) that supplies feeling to your face, head, ears, nose, sinuses and mouth is the largest sensory nerve in the body. It takes up over half of the sensory cortex (the area in your brain that registers pain). Your head and neck region have special nerves providing you with senses or smell, sight, hearing, taste, balance.
The trigeminal nerve is the ‘protecting’ nerve for all those important senses, airway, alimentary system and brain. Thus when you experience pain in the head and neck area your unconscious system feels very threatened as your very existence is being challenged. This explains as to why head and neck pain is often associated with high levels of fear and apprehension.
When this pain follows surgery or injections and the risks were not made clear to you then the impact of chronic pain caused by surgery can be significant. In these cases the impact of the chronic pain is escalated due to the unexpected and unpleasant consequences of surgery, when usually one would expect and improvement in your quality of life after surgery, not worsening of it.
Depression and Orofacial Pain
Prof. Khoo Suan Phaik, Oral Physician