Nerve Damage to Lips Caused by the Dentist

Claiming for Nerve Damage to Lips Caused by the Dentist

If you have suffered nerve damage to lips caused by the dentist then you may be eligible to pursue a claim for nerve damage caused by dental negligence. Damage to the nerves in your lips following dental treatment can occur because of lingual nerve damage, which can be caused by the administering of anaesthetic through a needle which touches or pierces the nerve. Lingual nerve damage can also affect the tongue and result in the person losing the ability to taste and speak correctly. It is possible to recover from lip nerve damage however; occasionally the damage can be permanent and result in extreme, long-term pain.

Experiencing such an injury from a routine dental procedure is unacceptable. It could suggest a demonstration of negligence on the part of one of the dental professionals who were treating you and certainly a breach in the duty of care that all dentists owe their patients. If you would like to claim compensation for lip nerve damage at the dentist you should contact a claims solicitor with experience in dealing with dental negligence claims at the first possible moment.

After you inform them of the circumstances in which you sustained nerve damage and the affect it has had on your life, they will be able to advise you on your options for claiming and how best to proceed. If your solicitor thinks that your claim could be of considerable strength, they will begin the process of establishing negligence with the help of an independent dental expert. If negligence can be established then they may offer you legal representation if you decide to pursue a claim.

Calculating Compensation for Lip Nerve Damage at the Dentist

The amount of compensation for lip nerve damage at the dentist you could be entitled to receive will be negotiated after negligence has been established and the negligent party has admitted negligence. The solicitors involved in calculating your claim will first examine the Judicial College Guidelines for the Assessment of General Damages, which is a publication that contains a list of various accident injuries and how much they may be worth in accordance with their extent and permanency. From this publication they will obtain a base value for your claim.

This base value will then be adjusted when they take into account a number of factors regarding your claim for nerve damage caused by dental negligence. These may include your sex, age, your general health before sustaining nerve damage, the pain and suffering you experienced and the affect it has had on your general quality of life. Much of this will be covered by the areas of personal injury claim known as “special damages” and “general damages”.

Special Damages

Special damages will be the area of your claim for nerve damage to lips caused by the dentist that will take into consideration the financial impact your injury has had on your life. It has two categories “incidental” special damages and “consequential” special damages. Incidental special damages deals with the immediate costs of remedying a situation, whereas consequential special damages cover the more long-term financial repercussions of a dental negligence injury. Special damages could compensate you for –

  • Any financial losses experienced because of being unable to work due to your injury
  • Medical expenses incurred for treatment of your injury
  • Long-term medical treatment of nerve damage sustained

General Damages

General damages will be the aspect of your claim for nerve damage caused by dental negligence that will take into consideration pain and suffering, any diagnosable psychological injury suffered as a result and also your “loss of amenity”. Loss of amenity refers to instances where you have been unable to take part in the same everyday activities and tasks that you did before sustaining a lip nerve injury, whether it be a permanent or temporary change. As part of general damages you could be compensated for –

  • Any anxiety or post-traumatic stress experienced following your dental procedure
  • Being unable to carry out domestic tasks or look after your children
  • Loss of enjoyment from pastimes or hobbies

Statute of Limitations and Nerve Damage to Lips Caused by the Dentist

With all personal injury claims there is a three year time limit imposed by the UK Statute of Limitations. The Statute of Limitations was introduced in 1980 as part of the Limitations Act and its purpose is to ensure that potential claimants would only be able to pursue a claim while there was still recent evidence available. It also ensures that negligent parties don’t have to live in constant fear of litigation. This time limit begins either on the date an injury is sustained or the date that it is discovered. In your case it will begin on the date you discovered that you had suffered nerve damage to lips caused by the dentist. This may not necessarily be the date that it was sustained, as such injuries can sometimes take a period of time to manifest and become apparent.

While three years may seem like a sufficient amount of time to pursue compensation for lip nerve damage at the dentist, it is still advisable to contact a solicitor as soon as possible following dental negligence. Unexpected circumstances can often delay a claim, for example if negotiations break down while trying to calculate a claim value or if there is difficulty gathering adequate evidence to strengthen your claim. Furthermore, if you are making a claim against the NHS a letter of complaint will have to be written and sent to them within a year of the dental negligence occurring. It is always advisable that you seek the help of a solicitor while writing this letter, as the way it is written can affect the viability of a claim.

Claim for Nerve Damage Caused by Dental Negligence for Children

If a child has sustained nerve damage to lips caused by the dentist, the process of claiming compensation for lip nerve damage at the dentist is slightly different. Because people under eighteen are not permitted by UK law to advise a lawyer or pursue a claim on their own behalf, the three year time limit imposed by the Statute of Limitations will not begin until they turn eighteen. This means that they will have up until the age of twenty one to make a claim. If it is preferable to do so in the meantime, a parent or legal guardian can initiate a claim for nerve damage caused by dental negligence on their child’s behalf by representing them as their “litigation friend”.

Speak with a Specialist Medical Negligence Solicitor

The information provided in this article regarding claiming compensation for nerve damage to lips caused by the dentist is general advice and it is no alternative to the specific advice that a claims solicitor with knowledge of your particular situation will be able to provide. It is therefore advisable that you contact one at the first possible moment to discuss your potential claim.

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