Maxillary Nerve or Second Division of Trigeminal Nerve
This division supplies sensation to the central part of the face, including the maxillary bone, all the maxillary teeth, the soft tissues of the hard palate, and the soft tissues surrounding the teeth. It contains no somatic motor fibers.
The maxillary teeth. The maxillary nerve on each side passes forward in the floor of the orbit of the eye. It first gives off the posterior superior alveolar branch to the
- three maxillary molars.
When in the floor, the maxillary nerve gives off a middle superior alveolar branch to the
- maxillary bicuspids and mesial root of the first molar.
Then, the maxillary nerve gives off an anterior superior alveolar branch to the
- maxillary incisors and cuspid.
The palatal area. The maxillary nerve on each side gives off a palatine nerve, which has an anterior, middle, and posterior branch. The anterior palatine nerve emerges upon the hard palate through the greater palatine foramen, and passes forward nearly to the incisor teeth where it ends with fibers of the nasopalatine nerve. It supplies-
- the gingiva (gum tissue),
- the mucous membrane,
- the glands of the hard palate and
- part of the soft palate.
The middle and posterior palatine nerves reach the soft palate area through the lesser palatine foramina and give off branches to the
- tonsil, and
- soft palate.
The nasopalatal area. Another branch of the maxillary nerve gives rise to the nasopalatine nerve. This nerve descends to the roof of the mouth through the incisive canal and communicates with the corresponding nerve of the opposite side and with the anterior palatine nerve.