Does the thought of walking through your dental practice’s door make your palms sweat and your heart race? Did you have a poor experience with a previous dentist that makes it incredibly difficult to allow new dentists to perform routine cleanings? Are you settling for tooth pain and decay because you’d rather do that than see a dentist? Dental anxiety is quite a common problem across the country, so the first step to solving your problem is to realize that you are not alone.
When you visit a practice that offers sedation dentistry, you can finally get the treatments you need without the anxiety it entails.
What is Sedation Dentistry?
Sedation dentistry is a method of helping patients with dental anxiety or fear get the treatments they need through a variety of sedatives. These sedatives can be administered through laughing gas (nitrous oxide) oral conscious sedation (pill form), or an IV (intravenously), all depending on the level of anxiety or fear present.
Considering that between 30 and 40 million Americans avoid seeing the dentist due to anxiety or fear, it’s not surprising that more and more dentists are taking the initiative to make providing treatments easier for everyone. When given by a dentist who’s licensed to offer sedation, the process is completely safe. Dentists are required to interview patients first before offering sedation as well, in order to confirm that they won’t experience any adverse side effects during treatment.
What is Oral Conscious Sedation?
As mentioned, oral conscious sedation is administered through a pill. It’s typically used by patients with moderate levels of anxiety and is taken several hours prior to the appointment. By the time the effects kick in, you’ll need a friend or family member to drive you to and from the practice. After treatment is complete, you’ll need to wait at least 12 hours before resuming regular daily activities. You should also avoid operating a vehicle or other heavy machinery out of safety for yourself and others.
How Can it Benefit?
When sedated, you’ll be put into a deep state of relaxation, making your dental treatment incredibly easy. You also won’t remember much of the treatment to begin with, so getting future cleanings and exams done will also be much easier. However, you won’t be completely asleep; this is intentional so you can tell the dentist if you need to be made more comfortable during treatment.
Additionally, people with anxiety aren’t the only group who can benefit from sedation dentistry. People who also experience the following should consider using oral conscious sedation to make visits easier:
- A low pain threshold
- Physical or mental impairments that make sitting in the dental chair difficult
- A sensitive gag reflex or sensitive teeth
- A large amount of dental work completed at once
With sedation dentistry, a dentist can get you the treatment you need with ease! Schedule an appointment today to get started!
About the Author
Dr. Johnny Cheng is fully licensed to provide sedation services to anxious or fearful patients. When you visit, you can expect a calm and controlled environment that’s always safe to receive treatment in. To learn more about the process of sedation, you can contact him through his website.