Relieve Anxiety With A Variety Of Dental Sedation Treatments Available
Not everyone enjoys going to the dentist – in fact, most people do not. Fear of pain, discomfort, or sharp dental tools can cause extreme anxiety before appointments, or even result in patients avoiding dental treatment altogether. Modern dental providers are understanding of this fear, especially in older patients who may have multiple dental issues to address. Using several methods of sedation dentistry, dentists have encouraged individuals to get back into the chair, significantly increasing the rate of good oral health and hygiene.
What is Sedation Dentistry?
Sedation dentistry involves any dental procedure performed under a sedative. In the past, sedation was used only for more severe treatments such as extractions and root canals. However, as dental needs in patients have changed, some providers now offer sedation dentistry for simple procedures such as annual cleanings. Sedatives can be provided to patients in various forms depending on their body composition and the procedure to be performed. The goal of sedation dentistry is to relax patients and to numb the areas of the mouth where dental treatment is needed. Dependent on the sedation level required for each patient, a dental anesthesiologist may be required to administer stronger doses of sedation than just a ‘tingly’ numbness.
Benefits of Sedation Dentistry
Sedation dentistry is an excellent solution for patients who typically skip their dental appointments due to fear or stress. Patients benefitting the most from sedation dentistry techniques may have:
- Phobias of dental tools and needles
- Multiple dental treatments needed in a visit
- Troubles becoming numb with traditional numbing solutions
- Anxiety or panic disorders
- Negative past experiences with dental providers
- Sensitive or uncontrollable gag reflux
- Tooth and gum sensitivity
- Developmental disabilities, such as Autism
By providing these individuals with a worry-free solution to attending their appointments, patients receive the best quality oral care without the added stress.
Levels of Sedation Dentistry Available
Some patients are uncomfortable with the idea of being completely unconscious in the dental chair. Others would prefer to have a healthy mouth without ever knowing how! To provide comfortable services for all patients, there are three sedation levels available for patients to choose from:
Types of Sedation
Risks of Sedation Dentistry
The most common side effects reported by patients who undergo sedation dentistry is the feelings of sleepiness or grogginess once the sedative begins to wear off. Even if you have experienced sedation dentistry in the past, it is always important to bring a designated driver with you to the appointment in the case you are too tired to drive home. To decrease the chances of adverse side effects of sedation, only licensed professionals are permitted to administer these medications. Patients are continuously monitored during the procedures while under sedation to watch for any abnormal reactions that could occur. Medical history is also examined before administering any drugs to rule out possible allergic reactions to the sedatives.
If you have concerns regarding your reaction to sedation dentistry, discussing these with your dental provider is essential before receiving any form of medication.
Finding a Sedation Dentist
Choosing a dentist to provide sedation dentistry should not be done without the proper research. Not all dentists are qualified to administer every type of sedation technique. If you know you or a loved one will require a deep sedation, you will want to ensure your provider is a licensed dental anesthesiologist through your state’s Board of Dental Examiners. These providers are specially trained to deliver sedative medicine and educated on monitoring patients in an altered state of consciousness. To find a dentist in your area who is legally licensed in the field, contact your insurance company for a list of approved providers.
There is a lot to consider when looking into sedation dentistry. However, the benefit of receiving the best quality dental treatments, worry-free of pain and anxiety, makes the effort of searching for the right provider well worth your while.