Did I Have a Stroke?
Question: It coincided with dental work. All of a sudden I started to talk funny. It was so difficult to talk, food was falling out of my mouth, and I was aspirating and choking on food and liquids. I was still blaming it on the dentist because my mouth felt horrible and I talked slow. Inside of my head, my voice was normal, but when I tried to talk it just didn't work. I did everything in my power to get better at talking still thinking it was the crowns. Months passed and someone mention that I talked like someone coming out of a stroke.
Answer: There is no way for me to tell if you had a stroke. You need to visit a neurologist to find out why you are having these problems. There are various conditions that can cause facial weakness and paralysis such as Bell's Palsy, facial nerve damage, stroke, etc. A neurologist can perform tests to determine what has happened. If you experienced tongue and/or facial paralysis, you should ask your physician about having a swallow study. You need to make sure that you are not still aspirating food or drink because aspiration can lead to pneumonia and pose a potentially life threatening condition. One can aspirate without even knowing it so don't assume you are okay just because you aren't coughing when you swallow. It sounds like you could benefit from speech therapy as well.
Numbness or lack of facial movement does not usually last more than several hours (2-6 usually) after a dental procedure and definitely not for weeks. My advice to all is that if you continue to have numbness and paralysis the day after a dental procedure, contact your dentist or doctor immediately.
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