How nice would it be to have all of your dental needs addressed with little or no anxiety or discomfort? For some of the most fearful patients, dental needs are simply not taken care of, due to the extreme anxiety that going to the dentist provokes. Sedation dentistry may be just the answer for those whose fear has prevented them from getting the dental care that they require and deserve. There are those who counter with: “Yes, but I don’t like needles either!” Well, sedation in dentistry can be accomplished with a simple pill taken by the mouth. Sound interesting? Well, it is for us in the Dental Health field as well. Thanks to the sedation option, we are able to treat the (estimated) 40% of the population that would not otherwise seek routine dental care, due to their fear of dentistry.
The technique is referred to as “Conscious Sedation,” the patient is sedated enough to have their dental work done with no discomfort, fear or memory of the appointment afterward. This technique is the safest, easiest and most effective route of administration of sedatives for use in all phases of general dentistry. Unlike general anesthesia, the patient is not completely unconscious. While extremely “groggy,” he or she can still maintain some degree of communication with the dentist. They are, however, sedated enough to allow them to receive the much needed dental care that they have been avoiding for years. Afterward, patients generally will not remember the events of the appointment. By utilizing a pill form of sedative, this procedure is extremely safe, and non-invasive.
Generally, the patient will take a pill the evening before the appointment, to help them get a restful night’s sleep. Then a pill, or even a sedative “drink” is administered the day of the appointment and the patient is made comfortable for their visit. The patient is monitored by qualified personnel and equipment the entire time. Special arrangements will need to be made by the patient, as driving to and from the appointment is absolutely forbidden. There are other specific instructions that must be adhered to, and not all patients are medically appropriate for this procedure.
Do you usually have trouble getting numb? Conscious Sedation Dentistry can be the answer for you as well. The sedatives that are used will make the anesthetics much more effective (yes anesthesia is still needed, but you will neither care, nor remember!) Why not experience Dentistry in the most comfortable way possible in as few visits as possible? Sometimes, once the patient is sedated, they can actually have all of their work done in just one visit. Of coursethat all depends on exactly what needs to be done, but your initial exam and consultation will clear up all the remaining questions you may have. Perhaps the best thing of all is that, by the following day, you are back to normal with a new smile, knowing that your dental phobia is a thing of the past.