Dental sedation is a technique that can be used when a patient suffers from anxiety or fear of the dentist. Varying degrees of dental sedation can be utilized, depending on the associated level of anxiety. Methods of sedation dentistry include conscious sedation with oral sedatives, inhalation nitrous oxide sedation, and intravenous, or IV sedation. These sedation dentistry techniques allow patients to receive the dental treatment they need for proper oral care. Dr. Winnicki has received extensive training and experience in the administration of anesthesia. Before the procedure, Dr. Winnicki will review your medical history, and discuss your options.
Who Is a Candidate For Sedation Dentistry?
People who have…
- high fear
- traumatic dental experiences
- difficulty getting numb
- a bad gag reflex
- very sensitive teeth
- complex dental problems
- limited time to complete dental care
There are a number of dental sedation methods used by dentists today:
Intravenous (IV) Sedation
Intravenous (IV) sedation dentistry is used primarily for moderate to severe dental surgical procedures (ie wisdom teeth extraction), but can be used for all dental procedures such as root canals, tooth colored restorations, and cosmetic dentistry. Depending on the amount of sedative administered, you will feel extremely relaxed, drowsy, and may fall asleep completely. Typically, patients remain conscious and respond to questions but do not feel anxiety or discomfort. You will probably remember little about the appointment afterwards. Because of the lingering effects from the medicine, you will need a friend or relative to take you home. We have successfully treated severely anxious people with IV sedation and it remains the sedation of choice for wisdom teeth extractions.
Conscious Oral Sedation
Conscious oral sedation safely puts you into a tranquil state of mind! It is very easy and one of the safest methods of sedation dentistry. A medication is prescribed by your dentist, to ensure you are completely comfortable and totally relaxed during your visit. The medication usually consists of two doses, the first dose is taken the night before your dental visit and the second dose is taken 1 hour prior to your appointment. Usually clients have little or no memory of their dental visit! Oral sedation is the best option for all types of dental treatment. Imagine getting your cleaning, fillings, and crowns all in one visit in a safe comfortable, relaxing environment. And you will feel fully recovered the next day. It is possible now with conscious oral sedation. Specific protocols and medical equipment are used continuously to monitor the patient’s blood pressure, pulse, oxygen saturation and respiratory rates to ensure that the patient is completely comfortable and reacting normally throughout the procedure.
Nitrous Oxide Sedation
Nitrous Oxide Gas, often referred to as laughing gas, is an effective drug that has many benefits for patients seeking dental treatment. Used on its own or in conjunction with conscious oral sedation, it helps to keep patients comfortable and relaxed. The gas is administered with a comfortable mask placed over the nose, the patient begins to feel a pleasant level of sedation in anywhere from 30 seconds to three or four minutes. After the treatment is completed, the patient is given pure oxygen to breathe for about five minutes, and all the effects of sedation are usually reversed. A patient that was anxious just a minute or two before treatment will become relaxed and calm.
Sedation dentistry may not be for everyone, but for those who have been avoiding getting their teeth repaired and maintained because of fear, anxiety, or discomfort, this method can be extremely beneficial.
Sedation dentistry allows us to help apprehensive patients get the dentistry they need pain-free. If you have not had dental treatment for many years but want to have a healthy smile again, sedation dentistry is for you. Call our office today to book your FREE sedation dentistry consultation with Dr. Winnicki!