Sedation Dentistry Takes the Anxiety Out of Dental Visits

July 24, 2017

Sedation dentistry is useful since people start missing out on regular dental care because of fear!

It’s estimated that somewhere between 9% to 15% of Americans don’t go to the dentist out of fear. They would rather put up with painful, infected, discolored, and damaged teeth than step foot in a dental office. Or, if they do make it in, it’s the worst part of their week. (Don’t worry, we don’t take it personally.)

Sedation dentistry uses medication to provide a more relaxing experience for those patients who might otherwise not receive dental care because of dental anxiety or dental phobia. Sometimes referred to as “relaxation” or “anxiety-free” dentistry, it is now offered by thousands of dentists, including dentists at select PERFECT TEETH offices.

Is Sedation Dentistry Right For You?

Sedation dentistry might be right for you if you avoid dental visits due to anxiety. Often times, that anxiety can be attributed to:

  • Negative past experiences
  • Fear of pain or gagging/choking
  • Extreme discomfort with the sounds and smells of dental office
  • Not wanting to feel numb
  • The feeling of losing control

Sedation dentistry may also be appropriate for people who:

  • Aren’t able to sit still in a dentist chair
  • Need a large amount of dental work completed
  • Have a low pain threshold

Types of Sedation Dentistry

Nitrous Oxide

Nitrous oxide, also known as “laughing gas,” is an effective sedative that is mixed with oxygen and inhaled through a mask that fits over your nose. It does not put you to sleep. You will still be able to carry on a conversation with the dentist, but it does help you feel more calm and comfortable. The effects of nitrous oxide wear off soon after the mask is removed, and you should be able to drive yourself home after the procedure.

Nitrous oxide is extremely safe, even in children, and we offer it in many of our practices.

Oral Sedation

Oral sedation relaxes you and reduces your sense of pain. You are aware of your surroundings and can carry on a conversation, but you’ll be less responsive to what is happening. You will probably also feel drowsy and might feel like taking a nap during the procedure.

The pill that is used most often is Halcion, which is a member of the same drug family as Valium, and it’s usually taken about an hour before the procedure. Find a friend or family member to drive you home if you have taken oral sedation.

IV Sedation

IV sedation is administered through the vein, so it goes to work more quickly. This method allows the dentist to continually adjust the level of sedation, and it allows you to be either almost or completely “out” during your procedure.

We look forward to being able to offer IV sedation with one of our general dentists later this summer.

Sedation Dentistry at PERFECT TEETH

We strive to make sure all of our patients feel comfortable at PERFECT TEETH. Our relaxing atmosphere combined with our  professional and friendly staff, have helped hundreds of patients feel more comfortable at the dentist. But if you’re still not convinced, sedation dentistry might be for you!

Contact a PERFECT TEETH dental office for more details and to schedule your appointment.