08 Sep Sedation Dentistry: Relax and Take the Edge Off
Sedation dentistry is a wonderful option for patients who experience extreme fear at the thought of going to the dentist. Even having their teeth cleaned can feel overwhelming, these individuals will go years never setting foot in a dental office.
This path leads to obvious problems. Dental decay and gum disease can lead to premature tooth loss. Tooth loss can impact the foods we eat, the way we speak, and our confidence.
For many patients, nitrous oxide (the gas many have tagged as “laughing gas”) is sufficient to calm their nerves during treatment.
But for the extremely anxious patient, oral conscious sedation provides the next step that truly takes the edge off the fear of going to the dentist. This is how it works:
The patient is provided a sedative to take at home about an hour before their scheduled appointment. The patient must have reliable transportation to and from the office.
The patient arrives at the office in a relaxed state. Before beginning the procedure, additional sedatives are administered; vital signs are continually monitored and the patient is attended to by a qualified and trained dental team.
Even though the patient remains awake throughout their visit, many are in such a state of relaxation that they do not recall their appointment (as if they slept through it). The sights, sounds, and smells of the office become muted.
Depending on the procedure, the patient may be given an injection to numb an area to be worked on; this would include dental fillings, crown preparation, etc. These same procedures would require anesthesia for all patients, but the truly fearful can’t handle the idea of the needle. With oral conscious sedation and a little topical medication to numb the area, even the extremely anxious patient can undergo needed dental treatment.
Once treatment is completed, the patient is advised to return home to rest the remainder of the day as they may feel somewhat groggy for several hours. It is even advisable for someone to remain with the patient at home for a few hours for extra safety.
Anxious patients truly have options that will allow then to maintain excellent dental health. To learn more about sedation dentistry, contact Friendly Dental Care at 740-687-6105 today.