Learn About Dental Sedation
When public have anxiety about pain or about the dentist in common, they often opt for what is sometimes called sleep dentistry. The different styles of dental sedation are what make sleep dentistry possible, although not all sedation dentistry involves actual sleep, but some do. Find out about the options, and then talk with your dentist about the correct dental sedation for your next procedure.
What Is Dental Sedation?
Dental sedation covers a range of techniques used to either calm a patient before and during a dental procedure or to make patients more comfortable during long procedures. You’re probably familiar with laughing gas, which many people receive before dental procedures such as getting crowns or root canals. However, dental sedation is a more diverse and composite field than just laughing gas, with lots of options for patients who feel anxiety or even fear at the thought of going to the dentist’s office.
Dental sedation is not piece of the pain managing your dentist will give you. Numbing agents and shots cover that part of the procedure. However, if getting a shot in your gums is frightening to you, dental sedation can calm you to a point where you can handle receiving that shot. With certain types of sedation, you may not even remember receiving the procedure, even though you’re awake for it.
Types of Sedation Dentistry
Sleep Dentistry Nitrous oxide, more usually known as laughing gas, is used to relax patients during dental procedures. You’ll be conscious while taking laughing gas, but because it’s a gas, it wears off very rapidly once you stop breathing it in. Patients who only receive laughing gas as a sedative are often allowed to drive themselves home after a procedure.
When you receive laughing gas, the dentist provides you a nose apparatus through which you breathe the gas. The effects are very mild, and you’ll start to feel the gas very speedily, sometimes as soon as 30 seconds after you start breathing it in. Some patients relax enough with nitrous oxide and do not necessitate another form of sedation. Other patients need laughing gas on top of oral sedation.
Sedation Dentistry Oral sedation, also called “conscious sedation,” involves you taking a arranged dose of sedative before your procedure. Depending on your case, you may take one pill the night before, and one pill an hour before you have the procedure, or otherwise as directed by your dentist or doctor. This type of sedation leaves you awake for the procedure, but significantly relaxes you. Patients who have higher levels of anxiety often profit from this type of dentistry.
Though you’re awake during your procedure, most patients remember either very little or nothing at all of the appointment after it’s happened. Depending on your case, while you’re under oral sedation, you may be hooked up to equipment that monitors your heart rate, blood pressure, and breathing, or you may not require that kind of monitoring. It depends on factors which your dentist will determine. The sedative will leave you feeling sleepy, but by the next day all the effects will have worn off. You’ll need a ride home from the dentist, though, so plan with a friend or family member in advance.
IV sedation has a small number of variations: the first is what’s known as “twilight,” where you’re aware, but not very aware of your surroundings. Twilight IV sedation makes you feel sleepy, and you may not remember any of the procedure once it’s over. However, you are not unconscious, and if the dentist needs to wake you up, it’s possible.
The other option is common anesthesia, which is comparatively uncommon as far as sleep dentistry goes. Only patients who need significant oral surgery, or who are resistant to other types of sedation, will need common anesthesia. With general anesthesia, you’re completely unconscious. This kind of sedation needs to happen in a hospital or a specialized clinic with either a nurse anesthetist or an anesthesiologist administering the sedative and monitoring your vital signs.
What Kind of Sedation Can Dentists Give?
Almost all dentists can give you laughing gas or recommend you oral sedation pills. More dentists are becoming certified in contribution the “twilight” type of IV sedation. However, to give any sort of deep sedation or general anesthesia, a dentist needs to total a special program about deep sedation, first. In British Columbia, the CDSBC regulates approval for dentists to give deep or general anesthesia, and it’s often dental surgeons who seek that qualification. Some dentists will work with a dental anesthesiologist, who has the training to safely give IV sedation.