Dental Sedation Options

Dental sedation involves the use of medications to help you feel calm and relaxed during your dental procedure. This can range from minimal sedation (nitrous oxide or pills) to general anesthesia.

Patients who choose nitrous oxide experience positive feelings of relaxation and drowsiness that last through the procedure. They can 강남역임플란트 drive themselves home afterward.

Nitrous oxide

Nitrous oxide, or N2O, is a mild anesthetic that works well for patients who are nervous about dental procedures. It is typically administered through a fitted mask over the nose and begins to take effect within minutes. Patients typically feel euphoric and less inhibited, which is how it gets its common nickname: laughing gas.

Nitrous oxide does not render a patient unconscious, so it is possible for the patient to respond to verbal commands from the dentist and remain conscious during the procedure. However, patients who do not cooperate may require a higher concentration of sedation.

After the treatment is completed, the nitrous oxide mask is removed and pure oxygen is administered to flush the sedation from the patient’s lungs. Then, the patient is free to go home and rest until the effects of the drug have worn off. This is why a trusted friend or family member should drive the patient home after a sedation appointment.

IV sedation

IV, or intravenous, sedation delivers sedative medication directly into your bloodstream. It’s an effective option if oral sedatives don’t produce the desired effects and works in conjunction with local anesthesia to provide complete pain control. With this moderate method, dentists use drugs from the benzodiazepine family (Midazolam, Versed, and Diazepam) to reduce anxiety, make you sleepy, and create temporary amnesia.

The dentist inserts a small needle into the vein in your arm, and then administers the medication to allow it to spread throughout your body quickly and efficiently. You’re still conscious during the procedure, but you will feel more relaxed and at ease.

Since IV sedation renders you groggy, it’s important to bring someone with you to your appointment who can drive you home afterwards. You’ll also need to fast before your appointment and avoid strenuous activities, unapproved medications, and alcohol for a few hours. Your dentist will discuss your medical history and any other relevant information to ensure that this treatment is safe for you.

Oral sedation

Usually given as a pill, oral sedation works by blocking certain parts of the brain that are responsible for fear and anxiety. Patients will remain awake during the treatment but in a very relaxed state. The effects can last for hours so it is important to arrange transportation home from your appointment, whether it be a friend or family member.

This type of sedation is a mild sedative that keeps the patient conscious but calm and minimizes pain during the procedure. This option can be paired with local anesthetics, which are injected from a syringe into the affected area and block pain receptors. Some patients will remember little to nothing about the dental procedure once the sedation wears off. It is important to talk with your dentist about the various options available, as well as any medical conditions that may prevent you from receiving sedation, such as diabetes or long-standing high blood pressure. They can also advise you on how much sedation your dental insurance covers.

General anesthesia

This option is reserved for extremely extensive oral surgeries, or for patients with extreme dental anxiety or a medical condition that could be aggravated by stress. General anesthesia renders the patient unconscious during the procedure, and is often administered through an IV line in a hospital or surgery facility.

Oral conscious sedation involves taking a pill to produce a moderate sedative effect, which allows the patient to remain awake but relaxed. It may be used in conjunction with nitrous oxide.

This is an effective choice for patients who are worried about needles, or who have a fear of visiting the dentist. It is important to communicate with your dentist regarding any health issues or medications you take before receiving sedation, and to arrange for a driver to get you home afterward. Patients under sedation can experience residual grogginess for hours afterward, so they should avoid scheduling appointments or social activities that day until the sedation wears off.