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Local anesthesia involves numbing an area of the body using a type of medication called a local anesthetic. Unlike general anesthetics, local anesthetics don’t cause you to lose consciousness. Local anesthetics stop the nerves in a part of your body sending signals to your brain. Anesthesia usually wears off within an hour, but you may feel some lingering numbness for a few hours. Local anesthesia is any technique to induce the absence of sensation in a specific part of the body. It allows patients to undergo surgical and dental procedures with reduced pain and distress. You will be awake and alert, and you may feel some pressure, but you won’t feel pain in the area being treated. Other procedures may require an anesthetic that numbs a larger part of the body, such as from the waist down.