Sedation Dentistry and Is It Best For You?

WSedation dentistry allows relief to any patients who are terrified of dental care. The dentist medicates the patient, so the patient is decreased throughout the procedure. Sometimes sedation dentistry is referred to as “sleep dentistry.” This name is a little misleading since often the patient is fully conscious during sedation dentistry. WebMD outlines four levels of sedation: Minimal sedation – medication helps the patient relax, but the patient is still aware. Moderate sedation – This is sometimes called “conscious sedation.” The patient may have trouble speaking and slur their words and not remember very much Deep sedation — the patient is on the edge of consciousness until awakened General anesthesia — the patient is unconscious

Types of Medication Do Dentists Use For Sedation?

Depending on the procedure and the level of sedation required, dentists have a range of options. The most appropriate choice depends on your specific situation, general health, dental cleaning fairfax  and the level of sedation needed. The American Dental Association outlines four main types of sedation used in dentistry.

1. Inhalation Sedation Options                

The first minimal sedation type method is “inhalation sedation” using a medication like nitrous oxide or “laughing gas.” The patient can relax during the procedure, and it wears off quickly so the patient can drive home.

2. Oral Sedation Options                           

Sometimes, the patient needs something stronger than nitrous oxide. The next level is oral sedation using pills. Depending on the prescribed medication, the level of sedation varies from minimal to moderate. Halcion is in the same family as Valium and frequently prescribed to treat insomnia. The patient may feel groggy and even fall asleep during the dental process.

3. IV Sedation Options                                  

Intravenous therapy (IV) sedation is an option when the patient needs moderate sedation.

4. Full Sedation Options                         

Finally, general anesthesia is an option for full sedation. This option is less common as dentists generally use the lightest level of sedation required by the patient and procedure. General anesthesia is usually associated with dental surgery.

In addition to sedation, the dentist usually applies the standard local an aesthetic to the mouth to numb the pain from the actual procedure. Most dentist’s minimal inhalation sedation as needed. However, only dentists certified by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) prescribe moderate and more profound sedation as they require specialized knowledge. Any practices choose a dentist anesthesiologist who supplies any required level of sedation. These professionals most typically work in methods offering dental surgery.

When Does a Patient Need Sedation Dentistry?

Some patients feel high anxiety when they even think about dental care. Such people often avoid even routine dental cleanings. Recent research associates gum disease with heart disease and early mortality. The exact reason isn’t apparent, but it may be related to the chronic inflammation resulting from swollen, infected gums. In some situations, it saves patients from a lifetime of pain.

Some situations where patients benefit from local sedation include:

Fear of dentistry or anxiety which may result in panic attacks sensitive gag reflex that makes effective cleanings uncomfortable if not impossible Susceptible teeth making cleanings and exams unbearably painful Multiple procedures planned at the same time

What Are the Risks of Sedation Dentistry?

While usually safe, no method is free of risk. This is exceptionally true when involving prescription drugs. Consult with your dentist to see whether the benefits of sedation dentistry outweigh the risks. Some situations where sedation dentistry is risky to include:

You have obstructive sleep apnea, let your dentist know so you can discuss the risks. Obesity may enhance the chances of complication from the medication. Your dental exam Fairfax also needs to know whether you have a diagnosed condition such as hypertension, diabetes, cardiac disease, or respiratory diseases. There are other situations where sedation may be riskier. Be sure to share your complete medical history with your dentist. For your safety, the American Dental Association’s offers guidelines for your dentist on monitoring your vital signs.

Is Sedation Dentistry Right For You?

Some situations, like oral surgery, require sedation. In other cases, whether sedation dentistry is appropriate varies by the specific location. If you suffer from dental procedures, feel free to talk to your dentist. Sedation dentistry offers opportunities to cases who otherwise find dental care unacceptable. If you need a dentist or are still asking what sedation dentistry is, South view Dentistry has you covered.


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