Going to the dentist can be nerve-wracking. However, sedation dentistry is the perfect way to make your visit a more relaxed and pleasant experience. Read on to learn more about sedation dentistry, as well as the different methods we can use to manage anxieties and fears about dental work.
What is Sedation Dentistry?
Sedation Dentistry is the practice of using medication to help manage pain, discomfort or anxiety during dental procedures. There are several types of sedatives, varying in how they are administered and how strong their effects are. The four main sedatives used in sedation dentistry are:
- Nitrous Oxide: Also known as “laughing gas,” nitrous oxide is a gas that is inhaled through a small mask. The lightest and most common form of sedation, it is often used with local anesthesia to prevent pain and discomfort. It is the most popular form of sedation due to its safety, accessibility, and short-term effects.
- Oral: Oral sedatives are taken via a pill or liquid that is swallowed by the patient. This may be done up to an hour before treatment, and can provide strong, long lasting effects while still allowing you to stay awake.
- IV: IV sedatives are delivered directly to the bloodstream via injection. IVs provide fast, powerful effects due to the speed in which they are absorbed. IVs also provide a large degree of control over the dosage. They are often used for longer, more intricate procedures and surgeries.
- General Anesthesia: The deepest form of sedation, general anesthesia is delivered to the bloodstream by injection or inhalation. It is typically used for more intensive dental surgeries like wisdom teeth removal.
Is Sedation a Good Option For Me?
There are a number of reasons why sedation may be recommended for procedures. Anxiety and restlessness may prevent you from staying still while in the dentist’s chair. A low pain tolerance, sensitive teeth, or weak gag reflex may also make dental work uncomfortable. While not all dental work requires sedation, it can be a good way to ensure maximum comfort and stability.
Consulting with your dentist is the best way to determine how much and what kind of sedation you may need. Sedation levels vary depending on the type of operation being performed and the comfort level of the patient. Something like having a cavity filled may require some light numbing, while major surgeries like wisdom tooth removal may have you “going under” using anesthesia.
Before and After Your Visit
Depending on the process used, you may need to prepare before your visit. This can include fasting and avoiding the use of substances that may interfere with sedatives. Your dentist will inform you of any preparations in advance, as well as provide any medication to take beforehand.
After an operation, some sedatives will take some time for their effects to wear off. Recovery time may last anywhere from a few minutes to several hours after the procedure. It is recommended to have a partner or friend assist your recovery and to provide transportation after your procedure.
Want to Learn More?
If you would like to know more about sedation dentistry, Savannah Dental Solutions can help. We will directly address your concerns, relieve your fears, and make your visit a positive experience. Call us at (912) 354-1366 to schedule a consultation.
At Savannah Dental Solutions, we know that not everyone looks forward to their dental appointments. In fact, many patients avoid regular cleanings and check ups because of dental anxiety.
If you experience any anxiety related to a trip to the dentist, you are not alone. Various studies estimate 9%-15% of Americans avoid dental appointments due to fear. Wow. That’s 30 to 40 million people.
Even though many dental procedures are painless, being examined causes some level of stress for many.
Some signs of dental fear, phobia or anxiety include:
• Tense feeling our trouble falling asleep the night before a dental appointment
• Increased nervousness in the waiting room
• You feel like crying when you think about going to the dentist
• You feel ill when thinking about a dental procedure
• You panic during a dentist appointment
Relief from dental anxiety
Chad Schnabel, DMD understands the fear you may be experiencing. Have you?:
• Missed regular dental cleanings or dental checkups
• Ignored teeth problems
• Avoided scheduling fillings, root canal or crowns
• Consistently used over the counter medication to deal with tooth or jaw pain
Do any of these behaviors sound familiar? Let us talk to you about our dental sedation options. We have a variety of techniques that can improve and eliminate your anxiety. Unlike being sedated for surgery, you are not completely unconscious, just unaware of the procedure being performed.
We offer minimal, moderate, and deep sedation as well as general anesthesia.
It’s worth a phone call to determine how sedation dentistry can make your visit more comfortable and relaxed.
Complete Comfort During Your Dental Care with Sedation Dentistry
We understand that a trip to the dentist can be a difficult experience for some people. Shots, drills, and the use of all the necessary instruments can create anxiety. But now, we can alleviate all the fears and worries of the dentally challenged. With conscious sedation dentistry, these patients will become calm and not remember the treatment.
With just a single pill you take an hour before your appointment, you will begin to feel increasingly relaxed as you sit down in the dental chair. Gradually, your sedation will deepen, but you are still conscious enough to answer questions from the doctor. You will be put on a monitor for observation of your vital signs throughout the treatment. When the procedure is completed, a friend or family member will drive you home. After about an hour, you will be back to normal.
Unlike sedation for surgery, you are not totally unconscious, just unaware of the work being performed. This level of sedation works well for those who have a greater fear of being completely “put under.” This fear is typically based on relinquishing control. That’s why conscious sedation works well for most patient anxieties.
Other patients may need to have more work completed in a single visit. They cannot make repeated visits to the dentist, so accomplishing more work in one longer visit with suitable sedation accommodates their needs. And then some patients are resistant to anesthesia and need conscious sedation in addition to the regular anesthesia to have dental work performed.
We are one of the few practices in the state qualified to administer a full range of sedation options, including IV sedation. We also offer nitrous oxide (laughing gas) for lighter sedation. We offer this array of options to let all of our patients feel comfortable and relaxed throughout their dental treatments.
Savannah Dental Solutions
Drs. Chad and Alexandra Schnabel
9A Medical Arts Center
Savannah, GA 31405
Phone: (912) 354-1366