Sedation dentistry is a dental practice that is used when patients are nervous, anxious or afraid about visiting the dentist. The practice generally involves a moderate amount of sedation to get the patient relaxed and comfortable for routine cleanings or more invasive procedures or surgeries. Sedation dentistry is also known as sleep dentistry, however, the patient is typically awake unless anesthesia is used or the patient becomes relaxed enough to fall asleep.
Sedation dentistry is ideal for people that have extreme anxiety about dental work, have a relatively low pain tolerance, bad gag reflexes or sensitivities to various smells, sites and tastes associated with the dentist’s office. For individuals that need extensive work, sedation dentistry can help speed up a procedure making it easier for both the patient and dentist.
If you would consider skipping your regular dentist office check-ups due to fear or discomfort, sedation dentistry may improve your dental experience.
How Does Sedation Dentistry Work?
Sedation dentistry usually involves giving the patient a small amount of medication to help them relax. Depending on the procedure taking place the sedation medication may be given using laughing gas, an oral sedative or an IV drip. Typically, local anesthesia is also used to numb the location.
Sedation dentistry generally put the patient in a drowsy state where they are less aware of what’s going on around them which can help reduce anxiety and improve comfort. In order to determine the appropriate sedative for you, you will need to speak with your dentist about your health history, allergies, medications and dental work apprehensions so that he or she can determine if sedation dentistry is an option for your future visits.
After a Sedation Dentistry Appointment
Following a procedure where a sedative is used, patients will need to secure a ride home. If this is not necessary, your dentist will let you know ahead of time so that you can plan accordingly.
Contact your dental professionals at Westend Dental today if you believe sedation dentistry could help improve your dental experience.