Most people give excuses when the time comes to make that trip to the dentist’s office and this is because of fear. If you are one of those characters who tense with fear every time you enter the dentist’s office, then you might want to consider sedation dentistry. Some people are usually perfectly comfortable when they visit the dentist’s office and do not require any sedation. For those who require this service, consider the following levels of sedation used. They include;
Minimal sedation – this type of sedation means that you are awake but should not be at all overcome with anxiety.
Moderate sedation – which was formerly known as conscious sedation, means that when speaking, you may slur your words and will actually not remember much of the procedure.
Deep sedation – means that you are on the edge of consciousness and can be awakened any time.
General anesthesia – means that you are totally unconscious.
As a patient, you may choose the particular level you will be comfortable with and most of the time your dentist will also advise you on the specific form of sedation that will apply to your diagnosis. Types of sedation used in dentistry include;
This ranges from minimal to moderate and it largely depends on the total dose given. This type of sedation is characterized by a pill taken an hour before the procedure, which makes you drowsy but still awake. When a larger dose is given, moderate sedation is experienced and in this case, the patient can even fall asleep during the procedure but is usually awakened with a gentle shake after the procedure is done.
Inhaled minimal sedation
With inhaled minimal sedation, you will be required to breathe in nitrous oxide, which is also known as ‘laughing gas.’ This is combined with oxygen via a mask placed over your nose, which in turn helps you relax. The gas usually wears out quickly so the dentist usually controls the amount of sedation you receive.
IV moderate sedation
In this scenario, the sedative drug is given through a vein, which means that it acts quickly. With this method, the dentist is able to repeatedly adjust the sedation level.
General anesthesia and deep sedation
Medications are given that will either make you almost or completely unconscious. You will actually be deeply asleep during the procedure and cannot be easily awakened so the dentist has to wait for the effects to wear off or reverse them with medication.
Local anesthesia is administered in either one of the above mentioned types for the purposes of numbing the site where the dentist will be working on. This is usually to relieve pain if the procedure causes any kind of discomfort.
How safe is sedation dentistry
There are always risks involved when getting any form of anesthesia but in general it is safe, especially when administered by an experienced and professional dental specialist like Dr. Eli Friedman. Always ensure that your dentist is a qualified one before undertaking any procedures. Even though your dentist will go through your medical history to ascertain that you are an appropriate candidate for any type of sedation, remember to also take it upon yourself to inform them of any medical condition you might be having. People who have obstructive sleep apnoea or are obese should also talk to their doctor before getting sedated.
Consider the above mentioned information if sedation seems like a good fit for you and you will be glad that you did!