The Side Effects of Numbing Medicine for Teeth Fillings

Dentists use local anesthetics while filling a tooth because they numb a specific area of the mouth rather than numbing the whole mouth. Sometimes, nitrous oxide is included to help the patient relax during the procedure. Like all serious medical procedures done with anesthesia, the patient might experience side effects. Before having any dental procedure done, it's useful for the patient to understand some of the possible effects.

Is This an Emergency?

If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.


After receiving lidocaine, one might feel lightheaded, nervous, euphoric, confused, dizzy, have ringing in the ears, cold, nauseated or experience double vision. Other side effects include:

  • vomiting
  • sensations of heat
  • cold or numbness
  • twitching
  • tremors
  • convulsions
  • unconsciousness
  • respiratory depression
  • possible cardiac arrest

A slow heart rate, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular collapse could lead to cardiac arrest.


Some common side effects of prilocaine include itching, nausea with or without vomiting, drowsiness, back pain and constipation 3.


More dangerous side effects are shallow breathing, slowed heart rate, weak pulse, tremors and seizures.


Less severe side effects of bupivacaine include:

  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • anxiety
  • ringing in ears
  • speech problems
  • numbness in mouth,
  • headache


Serious side effects require medical treatment as soon as possible.

Use Caution

Anesthetics can carry dangers and complications with their use. If you experience any of the serious symptoms, be sure to seek medical treatment. Serious side effects are rare, but they have the potential to occur to anyone.

The Wrap Up

Doctor taking patient's pulse The most common reactions to Mepivacaine are nausea, vomiting, anxiety, sweating, confusion, blurred vision, having a metallic taste in mouth ringing ears, and faintness. Businesspeople sitting and talking Less severe side effects of bupivacaine include nausea, vomiting, anxiety, ringing in ears, speech problems, numbness in mouth, and headache. More serious effects are shallow breathing, gasping, a sensation of heat in body, fainting, slow heart rate, weak pulse, problems with urination and sexual dysfunction.