Dental anxiety is a common problem. Dentists usually manage patient anxiety with dental sedation options before performing any type of treatment. Dental sedation is not like the pre-operative anesthesia, but sedation can calm the patient down and relieve the fear and dental anxiety that might accompany the dental procedures.
Most sedation in dentistry are conscious sedation as it makes the patient insensitive to pain without complete loss of consciousness. Here are the common types of dental sedation that dentists use to help patients relax.
Nitrous oxide, or the laughing gas, is a commonly used sedative in dentistry. The patient takes it by inhalation with a mask, and it will begin to work in minutes. The dentist might adjust the gas dosage during the procedures. After treatment completion, pure oxygen will be given to flush out the nitrous oxide.
Dentists prefer nitrous oxide for the following reasons:
· Less side effects, and it disappears once the mask is removed
· Safe for both children and adults
· It doesn’t interfere with other daily activities, as you can proceed into other activities of your day once you’ve finished the procedure. Nitrous oxide is a weak sedative and quick to wear off.
It’s suitable for patients who experience mild-moderate anxiety during procedures and can be used in light procedure, such as root canal, as the more invasive or intense procedures may require stronger sedation and pain control.
Oral sedation starts with a sedative pill, that induces moderate sedation and may cause you to fall asleep during the procedure. The oral sedatives are from the Diazepam family, such as triazolam or lorazepam. The pill is taken about an hour before your dental procedure begins.
During the procedure, it’s more likely that you won’t remember much of the procedure, the dentist may try to awaken you a bit for communication.
It’s important to bring someone to drive you home after the procedure, as it doesn’t wear off quickly, and you will not be permitted to drive.
Dentists may prefer this method because it is:
· Better sedation than nitrous oxide
· Better for patients who fear needles
IV (Intravenous) sedation is all about injecting the sedative into your bloodstream via anIV line. The IV line is faster and more efficient for any drug to reach its maximum effect. After the injection of the sedative drug, there will be monitoring for the vital signs, such as heart rate and blood pressure, and the dentist may need to adjust the dose from time to another during the procedure.
Dentists may use IV sedation because it is:
· Strong and deep sedation and it can be used in more invasive or lengthy procedures.
· Indicated for patients with severe dental anxiety, as the patient will fall asleep and will remember nothing about the procedure.
This is the strongest method of sedation for patients experiencing severe anxiety, and can only be done in hospitals, as it requires specific and advanced training.
At Premier Dental of Central Ohio, we use sedation techniques to help our patients relax. If you have a fear of the dentist, our kind and caring staff can recommend a sedation method to ease your dental anxiety and help you relax throughout your procedure. Schedule an appointment at one of our Premier Dental locations and explore your dental sedation options.