What is sedation dentistry?
For patients who fear the dental office, we offer sedation dentistry, which involves the administration of medicine to help make dental visits easier. From tooth cleaning to tooth pulling, sedation dentistry can be used during a wide range of dental treatment procedures. Depending on the dental procedure and level of anxiety, sedation dentistry can vary in strength and method of administration. Levels of sedation include minimal sedation, moderate sedation, deep sedation, and general anesthesia. Types of sedation dentistry include:
- Inhaled minimal sedation (nitrous oxide)
- Oral sedation e.g., Valium®, Ativan®
- IV moderate sedation
- Deep sedation
- General anesthesia
With the exception of general anesthesia, the administration of a dental sedative will not put you to “sleep.” Instead, methods of sedation dentistry are meant to relax and minimize levels of consciousness.
Why is sedation dentistry used?
Sedation dentistry is most commonly used to help reduce levels of anxiety and fear experienced during dental procedures. Sedation dentistry can be used safely in both adults and children. Sedation dentistry may also be used if you:
- Are highly sensitive to pain
- Have sensitive teeth or a sensitive gag reflex
- Require extensive dental work
- Have difficulties remaining still
Sedation dentistry may not be right for all patients. Speak with your dentist to determine if you are an appropriate candidate for sedation dentistry.
What does sedation dentistry involve?
There are various types of sedation methods, some of which can be adjusted during your treatment procedure for optimal effectiveness. Your dentist can help determine which method is most appropriate for you. Depending on your dental needs, sedation dentistry may involve any of the following methods:
- Inhaled minimal sedation—also known as “laughing gas” involves the administration of nitrous oxide and oxygen administered via a facial mask. With inhaled minimal sedation, your dentist can tailor the degree of sedation according to your needs.
- Oral sedation—involves sedative administration via a pill that is taken by mouth. Oral sedation is one of the most common forms of sedation dentistry and can be administered in low doses for minimal sedation and higher doses for moderate sedation. Drugs used in oral sedation include Valium®, Ativan®, and other relaxants.
- IV moderate sedation—involves administration via an IV needle that is gently placed in your vein. With IV moderate sedation treatment can quickly take effect and your dentist can alter sedation levels.
- Deep sedation/general anesthesia—involves the use of medication to help place you in a deep sleep, allowing you to be partially or fully unconscious during your dental procedure.
What are the benefits of using sedation dentistry?
Sedation dentistry is a safe and effective way to help calm and relax patients during both standard and extensive dental procedures. If you are experiencing fear or anxiety about your next dental visit, sedation dentistry can help offer the following benefits:
- Anxiety relief during dental procedures
- Sedation levels tailored to your needs
- Varying administration methods
If you are interested in sedation dentistry, a consultation with one of our dental experts may be the first step toward a brighter, happier, healthier smile. At Cedar Mountain Dental, our staff utilizes the latest state-of-the-art technology to prevent, diagnose, and treat dental conditions. With over 30 years of dental expertise, our knowledgeable and caring dental staff is committed to delivering high-quality patient care and creating meaningful patient relationships that last. To find out more about sedation dentistry options call (860) 667-2600 or fill out the form on this page to schedule an appointment.