Sedation Dentistry

We know that not everyone considers a trip to the dentist an enjoyable experience.For some, the fear and anxiety has kept them away for years.

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.

Signs of Dental Anxiety

  • Missed regular cleanings or checkups
  • Ignored obvious teeth problems
  • Avoided scheduling fillings, root canals, crowns
  • Consistently used over the counter medications to deal with tooth or jaw pain
  • Feel anxious about scheduling an appointment

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.

We are one of the few dental offices in Georgia 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.

Although modern dentistry is virtually pain-free, dental phobia is remarkably common. Some people even put off much-needed dental work due to their fears, ultimately resulting in far more extensive and expensive procedures than would otherwise have been the case. Fortunately, sedation dentistry can help.

Sedation dentistry allows you to obtain dental work in a deeply relaxed state. Your options include nitrous oxide, which wears off almost immediately after the procedure, oral or IV sedation, which are deeper and require you to rest for the remainder of the day, and even general anesthesia, which renders you unconscious and requires a 24-hour recovery period. Your dentist will help you decide which solution is best for you.

Dr. Schnabel is certified to administer various levels of sedation that meet your needs and the appropriate dental procedure you require.

Our most popular option is a single pill you take an hour before your appointment. Your relaxation will increase and anxiety will diminish by the time you sit down in the dental chair.

  • Minimal sedation: You’re awake but relaxed.
  • Moderate sedation: You’re more relaxed and may not remember much of your procedure.
  • Deep sedation: You are deeply sedated but can be awakened quickly.
  • General anesthesia: You are completely unconscious.

In addition to the type of sedation you are prescribed, you’ll also need a local anesthetic to assist with any discomfort associated with your specific procedure.

Sedation dentistry is very safe. We constantly monitor the patient for blood pressure and oxygen saturation during the duration of the procedure. There are always two caregivers with the patient to ensure total safety. All members of the office are trained in ACLS and BLS to ensure patient safety should an emergency arise.

Nitrous oxide is the mildest form of dental sedation. Also known as laughing gas, nitrous oxide is a blend of nitrogen and oxygen delivered through a small mask over your nose. You will not fall asleep and will be able to respond normally to your dentist’s instructions, but you will feel a bit light-headed and silly, as well as deeply relaxed. Nitrous oxide wears off in just minutes after the mask is removed, making it safe for you to drive home.

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.

You will still be aware enough to answer questions from Dr. Schnabel and his assistants. We continually monitor your vital signs throughout your visit.

Some 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. For patients with a typical gag reflex, sedation can help them through their dental procedures.

When your appointment is complete, a friend or family member will drive you home. After about an hour, you’ll be alert and back to normal.

After the drugs were off, you will be feeling back to normal within an hour or two. Expect to take the day off work to relax and take your prescribed medications for pain relief, depending on the dental procedures performed. A lot of our patients elect to take a nap at home after their sedation.

Our motto for sedation dentistry is, “Open wide and relax.” We want your experience to be worry free, anxiety free and become a turning point in your approach to the health of your teeth. Ignoring or avoiding dental care can lead to other, more serious, conditions. We want every patient to have the brightest smile and healthiest teeth possible. Sedation dentistry and the variety of options we can provide are our commitment to making your visit as comfortable as possible.

Schedule the First Step Toward Your Healthiest Smile

We are excited to meet you and discuss your dental needs.  Call our office today at (912) 354-1366 or use the contact form here and we’ll get in touch with you to schedule an appointment.