I live with trigeminal neuralgia which causes pain in my face and head. This is an extremely painful and debilitating condition.
I have several posts on my blog about TN, including one about emergency treatments when pain is out of control. I have listed some useful posts further down this page and will continue to update.
What is Trigeminal Neuralgia?
The trigeminal nerve in one of twelve pairs of cranial nerves. We have one on both sides of the face. Each nerve enters the face just above the ear and splits into three branches.
- The top branch (V1 – the ophthalmic nerve) covers the eye, forehead area and goes from the bridge to the tip of the nose.
- The middle branch ( V2 – the maxillary nerve) covers the upper jaw, cheek, side of nose, top lip, palate, part of tongue, top teeth and gums.
- The bottom branch (V3 – the mandibular nerve) covers the chin and lower jaw area as well as part of the ear, the bottom lip, bottom teeth, gums and part of the tongue.
Sometimes the trigeminal nerve sends pain signals to the brain. There may be a reason for the pain signals such as pressure on the nerve from a blood vessel, a tumour or trauma to the face or head. However, very often, the reason is unknown.
Trigeminal neuralgia normally affects just one side of the face, but can happen on both. Either one, two or all three branches can be affected.
The pain can feel like an electric shock or a bolt of lightning. This type of pain can come and go. Some sufferers can have remission periods which can last for weeks, months or even years in a few cases.
Some people have constant pain (atypical trigeminal neuralgia) which can ache, burn, throb and stab. There is normally no remission periods with this type of pain.
Many people have both types.
There are several types of trigeminal neuralgia and there are treatments and medications which can help. More information can be found about them on my Facebook Awareness and Information page, End Trigeminal Neuralgia.
Helpful Posts About Trigeminal Neuralgia on my Blog
- Emergency treatments – If your TN is out of control, A&E or ER can give meds by IV. This post contains details.
- Pain Diary – Using a pain diary can help you find triggers.
- Help doctors help you – This post has some tips which might help your doctor understand and help more. It includes diagrams to explain your pain.
- Medication help – Helpful suggestions about taking meds.
- Coping with medication side effects – Suggestion to help those side effects from meds.
- Eating and cooking tips – Eating can be difficult with TN. This post has some tips which might help.
My Posts About TN on Other Websites
- Pain Resource – A post about my struggle to get a diagnosis.
- National Pain Report – Why awareness is so important.
- Chronillicles – My life with trigeminal neuralgia.
I have a board on Pinterest just for posts related to trigeminal neuralgia. Please click on the following link to visit it.