How Does Sedation Dentistry Work?

20 Feb 2020 by  admin in Dentistry, Sedation Dentistry

 

inhalation sedation at dental clinicNo one likes the idea of getting dental work, but for some, the anticipation is so overwhelming that they avoid it altogether. However, sedation dentistry helps people overcome mild to severe anxieties so that they can feel comfortable and relaxed before, during, and after their procedure.

What is sedation dentistry?

Sedation therapy refers to the use of medications to help ease patients’ anxieties or to prevent pain during procedures. While this can also be referred to as “sleep dentistry,” only general anesthesia– actually causes a patient to lose complete consciousness. In most cases, however, the patient is awake during the procedure but remains relaxed.

Types of sedation dentistry:

  • Inhalation sedation (laughing gas)– This is a minimal sedation level that involves inhaling nitrous oxide and oxygen mixture. The inhalation will relax you during your procedure but wears off quickly enough to be able to leave the office completely aware. In some instances, you may even be able to drive yourself home.
  • Oral sedation– This type of sedation is usually administered as a pill before the procedure begins. Its purpose is to produce a relaxed, sleepy state during the procedure. Depending on your dosage, you may even fall asleep but can still be awakened easily if necessary.
  • IV sedation– This is another moderate form of sedation that works quickly. It also gives the dentist control to increase the sedation level if he notices discomfort during the procedure.
  • Deep sedation – If you need something stronger than a mild to moderate sedation, your dentist may prescribe a higher dose to help you reach a deeper sedation level. However, unlike general anesthesia, you can still be wakened without the need for drugs to wear off or reversed.
  • General anesthesia (sleep sedation) – This sedation is the strongest form, causing complete unconsciousness in the patient. This can be administered in cases of extreme anxiety or sensitivity. However, dentists usually encourage other sedation methods, as anesthesia can have other strong side effects.

Candidates eligible for sedation dentistry

A 2014 study on why people fear the dentist found that nearly 50% of individuals in the U.S. experience anxiety and even panic— from past traumas and discomfort with needles and tools to irrational and uncontrollable fears, all this can be managed with the use of sedation.

Sedation dentistry is an option for patients who:

  • Suffer from dental-related phobias
  • Have had a traumatic dental experience in the past
  • Have a small mouth or bad gag reflex
  • Have a low pain threshold
  • Need extensive dental work done
  • Have sensitive oral nerves that can cause increased pain during the procedure
  • Have general anxiety or anxiety toward dental work

Schedule a consultation today

If you’re suffering from tooth pain or are just nervous about getting a procedure done, there are options for you. Our dental office is qualified to administer various forms of sedation to make sure you feel relaxed and comfortable during your procedure. Call us today to learn more about our cosmetic dental procedures.

 

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