Sedation Dentistry: Relax and take the edge off

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Some patients feel an utter terror at the thought of getting into the dentist’s chair, while many others have a milder form of dental anxiety. If your worries have kept you from getting your regular check-ups and cleanings, you should consider sedation dentistry as a way to help you maintain your oral health.

With sedation dentistry, patients are eased into a state of deep relaxation before any dental procedures are performed.

In contrast to general anesthesia, patients remain conscious while under sedation. This helps dentists to direct the patients to make certain movements as needed. Furthermore, the patient’s airway is not compromised during sedation.

As an added benefit, sedation leaves patients with virtually no memory of the procedure afterward. Sedation also helps patients tolerate longer sessions, which can benefit patients who are undergoing lengthy, complex dental treatments.

The dentist may use a variety of methods to deliver the sedative medications to patients. The anti-anxiety drugs can be taken in pill form or provided to the patient intravenously. Patients may also choose nitrous oxide, which is a gas, for its sedative effects.

The different methods will appeal to different patients. For example, those looking for an instantaneous effect will likely benefit from IV sedation or nitrous oxide, while needle-phobes should consider oral medications.

Patients’ vital signs are carefully monitored while they are under sedation. Those who choose IV sedation receive attention from board-certified anesthesiologists.

When choosing sedation dentistry, patients should know how they need to prepare for the visit in advance. For example, patients who are receiving the medications intravenously may need to fast for several hours prior to the visit. Those who opt for sedation in pill form will need to take the pill before coming to the office to give it time to take effect.

All sedation dentistry patients should bring a responsible adult with them to escort them home after the visit. Those who take sedatives in pill form will need a ride to the appointment, too, as those medications can affect a person’s driving ability.

To learn more about the benefits of sedation dentistry, contact Anderson Dentistry in Colleyville at 817-485-2111 today.