Nerve in tounge /not working

I had surgery monday. I’m having only slight discomfort. My main complaint is my tounge is not working on one side. Any one ever have this? Its making it hard to talk and to eat. What should i expect? Docotor said days to weeks, but i wanted stories of who delt with this personally. Thanks

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You’re in luck! I had the same problem after my first ES surgery. As a matter of fact, when my surgeon came to see me in recovery post op, he said, “I have good news & bad news…The good news is you won’t have a mouth droop. The bad news is your tongue isn’t going to work very well for awhile.” Apparently my hypoglossal nerve was wrapped around my styloid & became irritated when my surgeon partially unwrapped it to shorten my styloid.

My tongue was indeed virtually paralyzed on the right side. My family thought it was funny that I sounded like I was drunk when speaking, & I had a terrible time eating because my tongue wouldn’t move my food around in my mouth when I was chewing. When food got over on the right side, I had to stick my finger in & move it to the left. After awhile, I became more sophisticated & started using a fork or spoon to move the food (probably a bit more socially correct as well). :wink:

This will likely sound kind of gross, but I wanted to eat regular meals after my first week post op so my husband kindly made me “blender meals” where he’d put whatever we were having for a given meal together w/ a bit of almond milk in the blender & made something thicker than a shake but ground up enough I didn’t have to chew it. It was fine by me & much more filling than smoothies.

Now to answer the BIG question - how long might this last. My tongue gradually improved to the point where I could eat & talk reasonably well 2-3 months post op. By 9 months post op I was 95% back to normal. Since I’m 3 years out from that surgery, there probably won’t be any more improvement. Occasionally I have trouble pronouncing a word (oddly this only happens when my head is in a certain position) & even less often I’m aware of my food not moving around properly when I’m eating. This slight inconvenience is a small price to pay for being free of my ES symptoms!!

Take courage. This problem will subside w/ patience & time!

Hope you heal soon Magen- take it easy, and I’m sure the problems you’re having will ease with time. :bouquet:

I’m so glad to hear someone had the same thing. And glad this won’t be permanent. I think alot of my nerves are aggravated. My cheek is numb as well as part of my lip. Pretty much the right side of my face feels weird. But works so its very minor. I had nerve issues on this side from the styloid before surgery so im hoping it improves with time.

I had the cheek numbness too- that improved fairly quickly. Ear numbness is quite common as well post-surgery.

My ear started feeling funny sbout an hour ago lol. So weird. Hope all these nerves heal and i can move on!

Nerve healing is a process & can be slow. Things that don’t hurt today may hurt tomorrow as sometimes nerve recovery does involve new nerve pain as the nerves mend. The good - no - GREAT news is that once you’ve weathered the healing process, you’ll barely remember what you went through because you’ll feel like your old self again.

It is VITALLY important for you to take care of yourself & listen to your body for the next 1-2 months. If it’s tired, don’t push. If it hurts, grab an ice pack or pain meds - whatever works best. There is almost nothing that can’t wait till tomorrow (or at least later in the day when you might feel better). Rest is important (even w/ a toddler or 2 at home).

I remember having a bad stomach flu when my daughter was a toddler, & spending a day or two lying on the living room floor while she played around me. She brought me books to read to her. I put on music so she could dance, etc. We didn’t have a TV (on purpose) so I didn’t have an “eBabysitter”. If both your kiddos are at home, try leaning on your older child to help occupy the younger one. It’s amazing how empathetic/sympathetic children can be when mommy is “sick”.

I hope your husband is back & can help out. :hibiscus::sunflower:

I had tongue problems after my intraoral surgery and also TMJ issues that were never there before the surgery. Not sure if it was a structural change from the operation or due to overextension of the jaw during surgery. I had some tongue deviation wjen extending the tongue straight out prior to the surgery and this was worse after. This would indicate hypoglossal involvement. I had some paraesthesia and this took maybe up to a year to settle down. It still isn’t 100 percent and seems to be set off by my jaw. If I open my mouth widely to say eat a big hamburger, the paraesthesia is set off. The lingual nerve runs close to the stylohyoid muscle and can be affected which is more sensation than motor. In my case this was probably more the culprit. It will almost certainly.get better to some degree over time and nerve can continue to heal for 2 or more years do you need to be really patient.

Yes my tounge definitely goes to one side. I just hope the surgery was successful as im still having my previous es symptoms.

Are you still having all your previous symptoms? You may experience nerve related ones for awhile post op as those nerves have been irritated & compressed for quite awhile & will take time to recover. The same goes for any vascular symptoms you might have. If the vascular tissues were compressed for quite a while, it may take time for them to begin to recover. Some symptoms usually disappear soon after surgery where others will take several months to a year to go. Don’t be discouraged. You’re still in early in recovery. By 2 months post op, you’ll have a better idea of how your recovery is going.

Try to give yourself some time to relax each day. Stress will definitely exacerbate your old symptoms. The more you can rely on others to help you for the first month post op, the quicker you’ll recover.

Yes, it can take a while for things to settle down, it’s early days yet. Some members have found as Isaiah says that even a year later they’re still noticing improvements. And make sure you take it easy if possible as that can aggravate things. Best wishes! :bouquet:

The only thing i don’t have any more is the one sided headaches. All of my symptoms before surgery were facial/nerves. Facial pain and numbness pressure etc… all those symptoms are still there.

The nerves do take a particularly long time to heal, so hopefully with a bit more of that you’ll feel the benefits. Vitamin B complex is supposed to be good for nerves, so wouldn’t hurt to perhaps take a supplement?