With sedation dentistry, you can relax during dental procedures. It is beneficial for patients who suffer from dental anxiety or those who are undergoing lengthy treatment. Options include nitrous oxide, oral conscious sedation, and intravenous (IV) sedation. Dentists can only do some types of sedation dentistry with special certification.
What is Sedation Dentistry?
Sedation dentistry uses medication to help patients feel calm, relaxed, and at ease during dental treatment. It’s sometimes called “twilight sleep” because it makes you forget things for a short time and makes you less sensitive to pain without making you lose consciousness. There are different levels of sedation, from light nitrous oxide, which is the least invasive, to deep sedation, like general anesthesia. The lightest form of sedation often called “Laughing Gas” keeps the patient awake but calm. It is best for patients undergoing minor cosmetic procedures who don’t need heavier sedation measures.
Is Sedation Dentistry Safe?
Some people react badly to general anesthesia, but most are safe during sedation dentistry. Patients with obstructive sleep apnea or who have had serious side effects from anesthesia should tell their dentist before getting the procedure.
Who Needs Sedation Dentistry?
In many cases, people are so afraid of going to the dentist that they would rather suffer toothaches or let serious oral health problems worsen.
It can benefit patients of all ages, even children.
Dentists often recommend this option for those with:
- Dental anxiety.
- Patients with low pain tolerance.
- An overly sensitive gag reflex.
- Extreme teeth and gums sensitivity.
- Feelings of claustrophobia.
- Decreased sensitivity to local anesthesia.
- Difficulty controlling movements.
- Special needs (physical, cognitive, or behavioral).
What Types of Sedation Do Dentists Use?
Sedatives are typically inhaled, taken orally, or given through an IV, and dentists can control how much sedation each patient gets. Your level of anxiety, the length of your procedure, your health history, and your preferences are all things that can make a difference. Nitrous Oxide, oral conscious sedation, and intravenous (IV) sedation are the most common ways to use them in dentistry.
However, we work with you in every case to ensure the procedure is as painless and invasive as possible.
What is the Recovery Time?
Recovery times vary. It depends on your choice of sedation and how your body reacts. Patients who get Nitrous Oxide recover in 15 to 30 minutes and can drive themselves home after their appointment. On the other hand, People who choose oral conscious sedation or IV sedation usually need 24 hours to recover fully.
It would help if you didn’t let anxiety keep you from getting the good dental care you need. If you are afraid or anxious about going to the dentist, sedation dentistry can help you get the care you need.