Sedation Dentistry

Sitting on a dental chair can trigger an anxiety episode in many people. Your child may show temper tantrums to avoid going to the dental clinic. Not only children, but many adults also have dental fear. Such patients mostly put off their dental treatment, and this can deteriorate their oral hygiene.

At Willow Springs Dental, we strive to make treatments a positive and comfortable experience for our patients. We use the latest sedation techniques to help you relax. We offer oral conscious sedation and IV or intravenous anesthesia. Dr. Marc McRae takes the utmost care to ensure the procedure is painless.

What is sedation dentistry?

Sedation dentistry is the use of medicines and other chemical compounds to relieve anxiety and dental fear. For mild sedation, you may need oral sedative drugs that can be taken at home according to the prescription. We usually recommend oral conscious sedation, IV anesthesia or local anesthesia to relieve pain and achieve anesthesia in a clinical setting. We usually do not advise general anesthesia due to the obvious benefits of IV anesthesia over general anesthesia. However, certain surgical procedures may demand general anesthesia and then, we may refer you to a hospital or anesthesiologist.

The degree of sedation achieved by different methods varies. So, it is always better to know the pros and cons of each method before going for one.

What are the advantages of sedation dentistry?

1. Sedation makes work easy for your dental team

A panic or anxiety attack causes a gag reflex, increased salivation, and urge to take longer breaks between the treatment. On the other hand, if the patient is relaxed and calm, the dentist can focus on the work. The quality of care delivered is higher as the dentist can do the treatment without any disturbance or stress. Moreover, the overall treatment time is also reduced.

2. You can enjoy the dental procedure

The group of people who have dental fear cannot relax in the dental chair. The panic attack may precipitate when the dentist starts to drill the tooth or when the assistant puts in the X-ray film to take the radiograph. Sedative drugs help to reduce anxiety at home. They prepare you to come to the dental clinic on the day of your appointment. However, during treatment, you may need oral conscious sedation or other forms of anesthesia. The working area is numbed by these techniques, and you don’t feel the pain. So, you can sit back and let the professionals do their work without you having any fear.

3. You take home positive memories

Dental phobia can prevent you from going to a dentist or taking timely oral care. Regular dental visits play an important role in the prevention of severe dental diseases. During the check-up, your dentist analyses your oral status and advises the correct treatment. If the conditions like dental caries are diagnosed at an early stage, your tooth can be saved from root canal treatment or extensive procedures like extraction. Your pearly whites are precious, and you would not like to lose them.

A painful experience in the dental chair may create dental fear. The memory of pain and discomfort may flash before your next dental appointment. These memories sit back in your mind for years, and this can be harmful to your oral health. Sedation helps you relax during the treatment by raising your threshold for pain. Thus, you can go home with pleasant memories.

4. You can save some money

If you avoid dental treatments, it may burn a hole in your pocket. Extensive treatments cost more as compared to the routine check-ups and preventive services. Cancelling your dental appointments regularly may also incur out-of-pocket expenses. Thus, sedation not only helps you relax in the dental chair but also minimizes your dental costs in the long run.

5. You can respond during the procedure

In general anesthesia, the patient is made unconscious for a fixed duration and then brought back to consciousness. Immense care has to be taken during the recovery phase. It is a complex procedure that is usually done by an anesthesiologist. Contrary to this, the recovery is smooth and quick in other forms of anesthesia commonly used in dentistry. No complicated instruments are needed to induce the sedation. Apart from this, you are awake and can respond to the instructions as the working area is only anesthetized. It is a safe procedure with no associated risks.

The benefits of sedation dentistry are undebatable. However, there are few contraindications for sedation. Dr. McRae always checks if you have an allergy or suffer from a systemic disorder before choosing the correct method for you.

Are you a candidate for sedation dentistry?

If you have anxiety, fear or dental phobia, then you should talk with your dentist about sedation dentistry. Moreover, if you have a severe gag reflex or make involuntary movements during the procedure, your dentist may consider sedation for you. If a large amount of dental work has to be finished within a single appointment, your dentist may propose to go for anesthesia, especially if you have a low threshold for pain.

At Willow Springs Dental, we always take your consent before going for sedation. We strive to bring back a smile on your face, and sometimes sedation may help us in achieving our goal. If you have further questions or want to schedule your next appointment, please call us at (702) 867-2745. Don’t delay your appointment due to dental fear; please feel free to contact us.