#2 – Place Topical Anesthetic

When you have seated your client, check the salmon sheet for which teeth will be worked on. Dip a cotton swab in the topical anesthetic. Place the swab on the area to be anesthetized. The topical anesthetic should be in place 3 minutes before the dentist injects.

Put the anesthetic syringe together. We use two different anesthetics. 4% Articaine (Septocaine) contains epinepherine which constricts blood vessels. This means that it will take longer for the body to clear out the anesthetic and the client will stay numb longer than if the 3% (non epinephrine) carpule was used.

Use the 3% on all short appointments of 1/2 hour or less and all lower arch appointments of one hour or less.

The following pictures will illustrate where you apply the anesthetic for each area to be anesthetized.

Upper teeth and lower anteriors and bicuspids: place topical right above tooth root tip

Lower molar teeth: place topical where the mandibular nerve enters lower jawbone

Palatal injection: place topical where the tooth root tip you’re working on is

Block: lower blocks – half of mouth, use long needle
Upper block – for upper molars, use short needle

Infiltration: numbs just tooth you’re extracting.
1. Upper exts – use short needle, also place topical on palatal
2. Lower exts – also place topical on long buccal nerve