How Long Does Lidocaine Last (And Why)?

How Long Does Lidocaine Last (And Why)?

Exact Answer: Half An Hour

Lidocaine is an anesthetic useful in bringing numbness to a specific portion of skin or tissue. It is also alternately called Lignocaine and it is a common type of local anesthetic. Lidocaine is a medication helpful in relieving body pain or rather preventing the brain from feeling the pain.

Lidocaine was discovered in 1946, but, it was brought in public use only after 1948. It is regarded as a very effective and safe skin numbing agent and it is for this reason that Lidocaine is a very essential medication needed in today’s time.

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How Long Does Lidocaine Last?

Time of Tissue NumbingTime Taken
The time that is taken by Lidocaine to kick in2 to 5 minutes
Average Time of Lidocaine effectHalf an hour to an hour
Maximum Time of Lidocaine effectTwo to three hours

The use of this drug is particularly pronounced in dental clinics or in cases of medical treatments involving oral health. Lidocaine affects the skin tissues for anywhere between a couple of minutes to a couple of hours. However, the medical staff in such places inform the patients undergoing oral health treatments about of drug and the time for which it shall last.

Lidocaine takes about just a few minutes to get into effect. It can take a maximum of five minutes to kick in while the minimum time for the same is as soon as the Lidocaine is applied to the tissue. The patient has their skin tissues numb by this time.

Lidocaine affects the skin tissue for an average of about half an hour to an hour. This average time has been observed in many studies and with many patients.

The maximum time for which the drug affects the human skin tissue is two hours for most people. However, some people continue to experience the effects of Lidocaine even after two hours, sometimes stretching for a day or two. However, such situations are rare and the effect of lidocaine fades after two to three hours.

The time at which a person experiences the effects of lidocaine is a very subjective issue. Different people experience its effects for different periods. Thus, some people experience it for half an hour while some experience it for a day.

Why Lidocaine Lasts For So Long?

Lidocaine is a time-proven drug. It was invented in 1946 and since then has only improved with further studies. This has improved its effectiveness period making it last longer and safer.

The reason behind such a long-lasting effect of Lidocaine depends on a wide range of factors. The foremost factor among them is the dosage of the drug administered and the sensitivities of the patient. In addition to that, if they suffer from any ailments or infections also influences this period.

The dosage of the drug administered by the medical staff to a patient is the major determinant as to how long the drug would last. If the amount of Lidocaine used is large, it would be natural to have a long-lasting numbing effect. The dosage given to a person is based on the need as analyzed by the medical staff.

Another major cause of this effect is the different tissue conditions of people. The drug reacts differently with different people as not all tissue conditions are the same. Some skin tissues tend to be more sensitive than others.

Moreover, if the tissue suffers from any health issues, the effect of Lidocaine might be more pronounced.


Lidocaine lasts between half an hour and an hour. The drug takes two to five minutes to get into action and numb the desired skin area. However, in some rare cases, Lidocaine can last for a whole day.

Factors like the amount of the drug used to numb the skin tissue, the ailment or infection suffered by the affected skin tissue and the skin sensitivities of the patient. Generally, the greater is the proportion of these factors, the greater is the effective time for Lidocaine.


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