Everything You Need To Know About Sedation Dentistry
Posted by South Friendswood Dental Associates on Mar 13 2023, 07:00 AM
Dental anxiety is a very real fear and concern for many patients. For some, the fear and lack of control they feel during a dental procedure is enough to prevent them from seeking necessary dental care.
What Causes Dental Anxiety?
There are a number of factors that can cause someone to feel anxious at the dentist’s office. Some people are just naturally more sensitive than others and can’t handle the sound of suction or a drill; others may have had a bad experience in the past and want to prevent that from happening again. But the most common cause of fear or anxiety is the anticipation of pain.
To combat this common problem, we offer two types of sedation options – oral conscious sedation and nitrous oxide. Oral conscious sedation allows the patient to be awake but extremely relaxed and comfortable while undergoing treatment. Nitrous oxide, on the other hand, is a gas inhaled by the patient through a mask, which allows the dentist to continue working on a patient without needing them to open their mouth wide for a lengthy procedure. Both options are great solutions for those who are afraid of needles or other injection-related issues.
Going hand-in-hand with our sedation options is our patient comfort measures. We also utilize gentle techniques to reduce pain and discomfort, such as topical numbing gel, before the procedure begins.
What Are Two Common Types of Dental Sedation?
There are two basic types of sedation: nitrous oxide and oral conscious sedation.
Nitrous oxide is a gas that you inhale through a mask that covers your nose. Once inhaled, the gas induces a state of relaxation and comfort throughout your body. However, you will still be awake enough to respond to your dentist’s questions. Oral conscious sedation entails taking a pill prior to your treatment. This pill relaxes and calms your nerves so that your treatment can be performed in a pain-free and comfortable manner.
Both of these options allow patients to relax completely during their dental treatment. As a result, there is reduced tension on the jaw muscles as well as less bleeding in the tissues of the mouth. Patients can also undergo longer procedures without experiencing any discomfort from sitting in the dentist’s chair for a prolonged period of time.
Additionally, sedation dentistry helps patients with anxiety or fear feel calm before and during their treatment. It is common for patients to be completely relaxed and even fall asleep during treatment. Feel free to contact your dentist to learn more about the benefits of sedation dentistry!
What Are The Benefits of Sedation?
- Anxiety relief – Many patients experience feelings of anxiety about their dental treatments. This can make actual dental procedures more difficult and unpleasant for the patient. Fortunately, there are options available to help ease patient anxiety. Some patients choose to take anti-anxiety medications before their appointment or while in the dentist’s chair. Other patients have a more invasive option available to them. IV sedation allows the dentist to safely administer medication that will help the patient relax during their procedure. When the patient is relaxed, their treatment can be completed easier, quicker, and more comfortably.
- Anterograde amnesia – Patients who have to undergo extensive procedures may find that recalling the events that occur while they are under sedation is difficult. Some of the common side effects associated with IV sedation include memory loss and anterograde amnesia. The patient will recall the events that happened before they were sedated, but once they wake up, they may not remember anything that happened during the procedure itself.
- Reduction in gag reflex – Patients who have a strong gag reflex may have a difficult time getting comfortable during dental procedures. However, when patients are sedated, they are less likely to have strong gag reflexes. This means the dentist can work more quickly and efficiently to help the patient achieve a healthy smile and improve their oral health.
- Pain relief – One of the biggest benefits of relaxation dentistry is the pain relief it provides to patients. When a patient is relaxed and comfortable, it is easier for the dentist to perform treatments like root canal therapy or other painful procedures.
- The dentist can work faster – When patients are relaxed and stress-free, the dentist is able to work more efficiently. When the procedure is more comfortable, the dentist will be able to complete it more quickly. This will cut down on the number of visits to the dental office necessary to achieve a positive oral health and smile.
Schedule an appointment with South Friendswood Dental Associates for comprehensive oral care. We are located at 699 S Friendswood Dr., Suite #108, Friendswood, TX 77546. Contact us at (281) 482-7731 or visit our website to book an appointment.