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Anesthesia and Sedation Dentistry

Never Put Off Dental Work Because of Fear Again!

Are you really able to relax in the Dentist’s Chair? When you think of even getting your teeth cleaned does your body completely tense up with fear?  Would you rather put up with a toothache than go into a dental office?  If so, you’re not alone.

Sedation Dentistry Can Change Your Life

Over 50% of Americans do not visit the dentist because they are fearful or suffer from dental anxiety.  Our professional team will never embarrass you but recognize your fear or anxiety.  Our caring staff will work with you to understand your concerns.  Creekside Dental offers some techniques to make your visit pleasant and comfortable and anxiety free.  For people that avoid dentists at all costs sedation dentistry can take away some of the anxiety. Sedation dentistry can change your life.

What are my Sedation Dentistry Options?

What is sedation dentistry?  It uses medication during a dental procedure to help patients relax.  Patients are usually awake unless they choose to do general anesthesia.  The different levels of sedation are minimal- you are fully alert and responsive but have decreased anxiety.  Moderate (previously called conscious sedation) or deep sedation you may slur words and not remember the procedure and can be on the edge of consciousness but can still be awakened.  General anesthesia is when you are completely unconscious.

  • What types of sedation can be used?  Inhaled minimal sedation is through the use of nitrous oxide.  Also known as laughing gas.  You breathe nitrous oxide combined with oxygen through a nose mask.  This gas helps you relax.  It’s easily controlled by the dentist and can be titrated throughout the procedure.  Therefore, you can have more or less throughout the procedure and some patients might like to have more at the beginning of the procedure but often turn it down as they get comfortable.  This is the only type of sedation where you may be able to drive yourself home afterwards.  There is also oral sedation which can range from minimal to moderate.  For minimal you would take a pill and it is also for anxiolysis or to reduce the anxiety in a fully alert and responsive patient.  Typically, a medication in the same family as Valium is used.  This can make you drowsy but you are still awake.

  • If patients need even deeper levels of sedation such as moderate or deep sedation, which would involve the mental and physiological slowing of the patient with medication, a special permit would be required.  Likewise, with IV sedation or general anesthesia a patient would see a specialized dentist such as an oral surgeon for procedures requiring this level of sedation.

  • Regardless of what type of sedation received, you’ll also usually need a local anesthetic- a numbing medication at the local site where the dentist or hygienist would be working.  This relieves the pain during and often after if a procedure causes any discomfort.  At Creekside Dental we use a Wand anesthetic machine which is much friendlier and gentle in general which can ease patients fears too -it’s all plastic and not so intimidating like metal syringes.

  • Who are great candidates for sedation dentistry?  Anyone with a real fear or anxiety that is prohibiting them from seeking dental care.  It may also be helpful if a patient has a low pain threshold, has trouble sitting still in the dental chair, has especially sensitive teeth, has a gag reflex, or needs a significant amount of dental work to be completed.

  • Often times children can benefit greatly from having nitrous oxide too.  If they are especially scared or are not cooperative during their dental visit, nitrous oxide can be a safe and very helpful way for them to get through a procedure.

To read the original article, click here.

 

 

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