5 Things You Should Know Before Being Considered for Sedation Dentistry

5 Things You Should Know Before Being Considered for Sedation Dentistry

March 1, 2023

Dental anxiety or phobia is a serious issue that affects more than 50% of Americans. It’s the main reason why millions don’t seek prompt treatment for dental problems such as tooth pain and cavities. Unfortunately, these problems only worsen when left unchecked, further compromising oral and overall health.

If the idea or thought of visiting a dentist makes you uncomfortable, sedation dentistry can help. Your dentist can administer sedatives in various forms to help you relax and remain calm during dental procedures. Fortunately, sedation can help many procedures, from tooth cleanings to oral surgeries.

If our dentist in northeast Calgary, AB, has mentioned that you’ll be under sedation on your next appointment, you might be curious about what to expect. This article looks at five common things you should know about sedation dentistry.

    • How Sedation Dentistry Can Help You Manage Your Anxiety and Fear of the Dentist

Both children and adults may experience significant fear or anxiety when expecting a dental procedure. Dental sedation offers calming and relaxing effects on patients, making it easier and more comfortable to undergo dental procedures. Based on your symptoms and the type of procedure you’re having, the dentist can use the following types of sedation:

    • Nitrous oxide (laughing gas) : The sedative, which is a gas, is administered through a mask. The sedation only makes you feel relaxed and calm, but you’ll still be awake and can still communicate with your dentist.
    • Oral sedation : The dentist will give you a pill to swallow about one hour before your procedure. The pill or sedative makes you feel calm and drowsy, and you can even fall asleep. However, they can awaken you easily.
    • IV sedation : The dentist administers a sedative through a vein into the bloodstream. Once the sedation takes effect, you will feel drowsy and sleep off. However, you won’t be entirely unconscious like it is with general anesthesia. However, you may have less or no memory of what happened during the procedure.
    • How Sedation Dentistry Saves Patients from Pain

People with sensitive teeth and gums may experience severe discomfort during teeth cleaning and other procedures. The dentist can use a combination of sedatives and anesthetics to keep you relaxed and block pain during a dental procedure. These medications block or modify nerve communications in the nervous system to the brain. It slows downs or blocks the massages from getting to the brain, helping you remain calm and pain-free. It makes it easier for you to receive the right dental care.

    • How are sedatives different from anesthetics?

Most people use sedatives and anesthetics interchangeably as one drug. While used to keep you comfortable during dental procedures, sedatives and anesthetics differ. Sedatives slow down your brain function to help you feel relaxed and calm. On the other hand, anesthetics numb your senses to prevent pain. While you’re typically conscious with sedation, you’ll be completely unconscious with general anesthetics.

    • Dental sedation is safe.

Fortunately, there are no significant risks associated with dental sedation. Whether you have nitrous oxide, oral sedation, or IV sedation, you’re safe if you work with an experienced and qualified dentist. For deeper forms of sedation like IV sedation, ensure your dentist is approved to offer the sedation. They should adjust the sedation as necessary and monitor your vitals throughout the procedure to ensure nothing goes wrong.

Based on the sedation given, the effects should wear off within minutes to hours after the procedure. Nitrous oxide completely wears off in less than 15 minutes, while oral and IV sedation can take up to 8 hours. Having someone drive you home and avoid work until the effects fade away completely is essential. Otherwise, you risk injuring yourself or others.

    • Patients without dental phobia can also benefit from dental sedation.

While dental sedation helps you remain calm and relaxed during dental appointments, it can also benefit you in other ways. Consider sedation if you:

  • Need a lot of dental work: Sedation makes you feel relaxed and less tired, allowing you to have multiple or lengthy treatments comfortably.
  • Have a traumatic dental experience in the past
  • Have abnormally sensitive gums and teeth
  • Have a strong gag reflux
  • Have difficulty staying still
  • Have jaw, back, or neck pain

Are you interested in Sedation Dentistry in Calgary, AB?

Contact Sunridge Dental Clinic to speak with our dentist near you for more information about dental sedation and treatments.

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