Does the thought of sitting in a dentist’s chair fill you with dread? Do visions of needles, drills, and pain prevent you from scheduling check-ups? You’re not alone. Many people avoid the dentist due to fear of discomfort. Fortunately, sedation dentistry can help take the “ouch” out of dental visits.
What Is Sedation Dentistry?
Sedation dentistry involves using medication to induce relaxation before procedures. There are different levels of sedation your dentist may use.
Minimal sedation helps you feel calmer through anti-anxiety drugs like Valium. These medications can ease anxiety but don’t make you drowsy. Moderate sedation causes drowsiness using medications like Halcion taken by mouth. You’ll feel very relaxed but can still respond to communication. Deep sedation or general anesthesia administers anesthesia through an IV to make you fully unconscious during procedures. This allows more complex dental work but requires close monitoring.
Why People Get Sedation Dentistry
There are many reasons dentists recommend sedation.
Fear of Pain
Numbing shots, drilling, and surgery can seem scary to some patients. Sedation provides both physical and mental relief from worries about discomfort. Patients report feeling more peaceful and calm.
Some suffer from extreme dental phobia and panic attacks. Sedation significantly eases anxiety levels and helps patients relax into treatment. It removes the fear factor.
Sensitive Gag Reflex
Some patients have a strong gag reflex that is triggered during dentistry. Sedation dentistry minimizes this reflex to make procedures easier.
Complex procedures like dental implants or wisdom tooth removal can take hours. Sedation allows you to fully relax rather than worry about time.
Does Sedation Prevent Pain?
With moderate sedation, you’ll still require local anesthesia for any cavities or surgery. However, you’ll be so relaxed that any sensations are less bothersome. With deep sedation or general anesthesia, you likely won’t feel anything at all. The level of sedation can be tailored to your specific dental needs.
Benefits Beyond Pain Relief
Sedation also provides:
- A more relaxed, even sleepy experience
- Little to no memory of the procedure afterwards
- Quicker recovery time compared to general anesthesia
- Patients report feeling “zen” during and after appointments.
Risks to Discuss with Your Dentist
While sedation is very safe when administered properly, be sure to discuss:
Dosage – Your size, health conditions, and procedure length will determine appropriate medication amounts.
Contraindications – Sedation may not be suitable if you have certain conditions like pregnancy, sleep apnea, liver or kidney disease.
Monitoring – Your breathing, blood pressure, heart rate and oxygen levels will need monitoring.
Side Effects – You may feel groggy afterwards for 6-8 hours. Plan for someone to drive you home.
While sedation dentistry isn’t for everyone, it can help many people relax and have an easier dental experience. Talk to your dentist and see if it could be a good option for you. With the right approach tailored to your needs, you can say goodbye to dental dread.
Experience Comfortable Dentistry in Chatham and Leamington
At Brookside Family Dental, we offer sedation dentistry to ease anxiety about dental visits. Our caring Leamington dentists help you feel completely at ease with oral sedatives before procedures. Discover the benefits of a calmer, comfortable, and relaxed dental experience. Say goodbye to fear and finally relax during cleanings, implants, braces, and more.
With personalized sedation based on your preferences, you can maintain your oral health without feeling anxious. Don’t let anxiety prevent important dental care.