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Finding Relief: What to Do if You've Suffered Facial Nerve Damage from Bad Dental Work

When you agree to undergo dental treatment, you place your trust in the dentist to protect your oral health. However, situations occur where this trust is broken due to medical negligence, which can result in a number of issues, including facial nerve damage.

Cosmetic Surgery Solicitors is dedicated to providing legal advice and support to individuals affected by such incidents. In the following guide, we explain what to do in the event of a nerve injury incurred from a cosmetic dental procedure, and how seeking legal support can help you.

Understanding Facial Nerve Injuries

To understand the gravity of facial nerve damage, it is essential to understand the importance of facial nerves. These nerves, closely woven through our facial structure, control aspects such as our expressions, the blink of our eyes, and even our sense of taste. 

Any nerve injuries can result in significant complications and facial pain. Nerve injury from medical negligence could happen due to a lack of professional skill or an avoidable mistake during dental procedures. The symptoms of nerve damage are not subtle; they can manifest as facial numbness, muscular weakness, or in extreme cases, facial paralysis.

Impact of Facial Nerve Injury

The repercussions of facial nerve injury are far-reaching. On a physical level, it can lead to issues such as chronic pain, difficulty eating and drinking, and altered facial appearance. However, nerve injury can also have a strong effect on an individual's mental health, causing them to feel immense self-doubt, anxiety, and even depression. It can also impact one's professional life, with time off work required for medical appointments and recovery.

Lastly, personal relationships can be strained due to the stress and emotional turmoil associated with such a situation.

Medical Response to Facial Nerve Damage

If you are experiencing the symptoms of a nerve injury, you should seek immediate medical attention. The diagnostic process may involve a thorough physical examination, along with additional tests or imaging studies to assess the extent and location of the nerve damage.

The treatment strategy will depend on the severity of the nerve damage and may include medication, physiotherapy and, in more severe cases, surgical intervention. In addition, it is essential not to overlook the importance of emotional and psychological support.

Your Rights as a Patient

Understanding your rights as a patient is key when faced with a situation involving medical negligence. In the UK, the law is clear: patients are entitled to a certain standard of care and treatment from their healthcare professionals. If you feel that this standard has been compromised, leading to facial nerve damage, you may have grounds to make a dental negligence claim.

To be eligible to make a nerve injury claim, you will need to be able to prove the following:

  • That your nerve injury was caused directly by your dentist's negligent care
  • That your nerve injury has caused you physical or emotional trauma, or financial loss

It is essential to consider the possibility of making a compensation claim if you have suffered from a nerve injury. Compensation can help you to cover any medical care and support costs that you need to pay due to your injury, and these costs can be expensive without the financial support from a successful claim.

Making a Negligence Claim

Navigating a negligence claim can be complex, but the process becomes significantly more manageable with professional legal assistance. The first step involves gathering relevant documentation, which includes medical records and details of your dental appointments. This evidence forms the foundation of your claim. Expert witnesses also play an important role in these cases, as their professional opinion can corroborate your claim and provide insight into the standard of care you should have received.

Once your solicitors have gathered a good amount of evidence and feel as though your case is strong enough, we will approach the responsible party and their insurer to bring your nerve injury claim. If they do not accept your claim, we will fight your case in court proceedings. However, this is rare, and cosmetic surgery cases are often resolved in mediation without attending court.

How Cosmetic Surgery Solicitors Can Help

At Cosmetic Surgery Solicitors, we specialise in tackling cases involving facial nerve damage due to negligent dental work. We possess a wealth of experience, a comprehensive understanding of the legal landscape, and a robust track record of successful claims. From your initial consultation to reaching a settlement, we are there at every step, providing guidance, support and expert legal advice. We are committed to helping you secure the justice and compensation you deserve.

Prevention and Awareness

Prevention is indeed better than cure, particularly in the context of medical negligence. It is essential to research your dental professional's qualifications, seek a second opinion before undertaking any significant dental procedures, and be aware of the risks associated with any dental surgery. Raising awareness about dental negligence, its potential consequences, and the rights of patients can play a key role in preventing similar incidents in the future.

If you have experienced facial nerve damage due to negligent dental work, know that you are not alone. Reach out for immediate medical help, learn about your rights as a patient, and seek the legal assistance you need. Do not hesitate to contact Cosmetic Surgery Solicitors for legal advice. Call us on 0808 189 7725, or fill out an online contact form and we will return your call at a time convenient for you.

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Russell Sutton is a partner at Cosmetic Surgery Solicitors, with a comprehensive understanding of the complexities surrounding dental negligence cases. Russell's commitment to his clients is unmatched, as he empathises with the emotional and physical toll that dental negligence can take on people’s lives.

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