The inferior alveolar artery (also known as inferior dental artery, Latin: arteria alveolaris inferior) is a branch of the maxillary artery that supplies the mylohyoid muscle, mandible, tooth sockets, lower teeth, skin, and muscles of the chin.
The inferior alveolar artery descends in the infratemporal fossa. Before it enters the mandibular foramen, the artery gives off a mylohyoid branch, which runs in the mylohyoid groove on the inner surface of the ramus of the mandible. The mylohyoid artery distributes in the muscle and anastomoses with the submental artery. Then the inferior alveolar artery runs along the mandibular canal, supplying the mandible, tooth sockets and teeth, and dividing into the incisive and mental branches near the first premolar.
The incisive branch of the inferior alveolar artery continues forward below the incisor teeth to the midline, where it forms anastomoses with the corresponding vessel of the contralateral side.
The mental artery emerges onto the face via the mental foramen and supplies the chin. It also forms anastomoses with the submental and inferior labial arteries.