SEDATION HELPS DENTAL PATIENTS RELAX
A visit to the dentist can cause fear and anxiety. Patients who experience dental phobia may postpone or avoid vital dental appointments, and multiple dental visits are out of the question. Neglecting your oral health can lead to tooth loss, disease, and overall health problems. However, you can overcome dental fear with conscious sedation. Conscious sedation can give you the peace of mind you need in order to undergo dental work.
Who should consider sedation?
You may want to consider sedation if:
- You are fearful or anxious of dental treatment and dental instruments
- Local anesthetics do not have a numbing effect on you
- You have a sensitive gag reflex
Sedation can give you the peace of mind you need in order to undergo dental work. You may enjoy better overall health, an improved self-image, and a better quality of life with a healthy, beautiful smile.
Nitrous Oxide vs Oral Sedation: Which one is right for you?
Many people know nitrous oxide as laughing gas. In our office, we administer nitrous oxide to enhance patient comfort and relieve anxiety for patients of all ages. After you're comfortably seated in the dental chair, you'll inhale the gas (a nitrous oxide and oxygen mixture) through a face mask. We will control the amount of nitrous oxide you receive to ensure your safety. You will begin to relax and will not recognize pain so the dentist can perform your dental work while you stay completely comfortable. The effects of nitrous oxide subside once we remove your mask, so if nitrous is the only anesthesia you receive, you will be capable of driving yourself home following the visit and can continue your daily activities as normal.
Oral conscious sedation is the use of oral medication in combination with nitrous oxide to achieve an appropriate level of relaxation so that a fearful patient can calmly receive the dental care he or she needs. Most states require board-certification, which involves additional training in dosage, monitoring, and safety. The entire process is simple and comfortable.
At your first appointment, we will discuss with you your overall health and medical history. If you feel comfortable, we will take X-rays and examine your teeth and supporting tissues. This will give us the information we need to determine which dental treatments will restore your smile. Before you leave the office, we will schedule your next appointment and prescribe the oral sedation medication needed based on your medical history.
We will advise you as to when you should take the medication, which is usually two hours before your dental appointment. You must be accompanied by a responsible friend or family member at all times and should not operate a motor vehicle. You will arrive at the dentist’s office more rested and relaxed. We will gauge your anxiety level when you arrive for the appointment. If needed, nitrous oxide will be given to further relax you and our experienced sedation dentistry team will monitor your vital signs during the procedure. Your friend or family member will accompany you home once your dental work is complete. The effects of the sedative should subside by the following day. It is wise to have a friend or relative stay with you until the medication wears off.
Although your dental procedures may take hours, you will feel as if they take only minutes. Some patients become so relaxed that they fall asleep in the dentist’s chair. Some sedation medications have an amnesic effect, so you will have few, if any, memories of the visit. You can immediately enjoy your improved smile.