Many people avoid going to the dentist because they experienced traumatic care as a child, suffered painful procedures as an adult, or are influenced by the stereotypes they see on TV and movies. Even when they experience warning signs like pain in the mouth, many people avoid seeking treatment because of the fear they experience. At our office we understand these feelings and want to help. Whether you just need a routine cleaning or a brand-new smile, we offer sedation dentistry to make your experience comfortable and relaxing.
Sedation Dentistry is a Path Free from Fear!
While many of the services we provide are done only with local anesthetic (numbing) a number of our patients prefer something to help with the anxiety they feel at the dentist. Sedation fills the bill.
There are basically three types of sedation offered in our office: nitrous oxide (laughing gas), oral moderate sedation and intravenous moderate sedation. Here are the differences.
With nitrous oxide the patient simply breathes a combination of nitrous and oxygen. The level of nitrous oxide is adjusted for each patient to provide relaxation and anxiety relief. With nitrous the effect goes away after it is discontinued (you will be given pure oxygen for 5-10 minutes to insure that the effect has passed) and then you may drive home or return to work.
With oral moderate sedation the patient fills a prescription we provide and brings it to the office. We have the patient take the medication here, while in the chair and while being monitored. Typically within an hour or so the medication has relaxed the patient and the procedure can begin. You must have someone staying with you in our office ready to drive you home as soon as your treatment is complete.
With intravenous moderate sedation a small IV line is established in a vein on the back of the hand and the medication is administered. This route of administration allows a more precise level of sedation as the effects are quickly seen. Should additional sedation be needed during treatment it is easily administered through the same IV line. You must have someone staying with you in our office ready to drive you home as soon as your treatment is complete.
Just a couple of additional points. Moderate sedation is quite safe. You are awake and your protective reflexes (coughing, etc.) are intact. Your blood pressure and the oxygen levels in your blood are constantly monitored. The sedation is not a substitute for local anesthesia (numbing). We will make sure you are numb and comfortable before we ever begin. The sedation simply helps alleviate the anxiety some people feel at the dentist’s office.
Our office is dedicated to helping you regain and maintain good periodontal and oral health. We want your treatment to be as easy and pleasant as possible. For many of our patients some form of sedation helps to make that happen. Please feel free to call our office if you have questions about sedation.