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Any of the sensory nerves to the teeth; they are branches of the trigeminal nerve (CN V). The superior alveolar nerves innervate the upper teeth and gingivae; the inferior alveolar nerves innervate the lower teeth and gingivae. The anterior superior alveolar nerves, branches of the infraorbital nerve (from CN V2), run in canals in the anterior wall of the maxillary sinus and innervate the upper incisors, canines, premolars, and often part of the first molar. Sometimes there is a middle superior alveolar nerve that innervates the premolars and first molar. The posterior superior alveolar nerves (also from CN V2) innervate the rest of the upper molars. The inferior alveolar nerve (from CN V3) runs in the mandibular canal, giving off branches to the lower teeth and gingivae as it passes.Synonym: dental nerve
See also: nerve