What You Need to Know About Sedation Dentistry

What You Need to Know About Sedation Dentistry

February 1, 2021

For some of us, a visit to the dental office is not a traumatic experience (after all, you’ll end up with a bright smile). However, for others, sitting on a dental chair can be downright scary. But, it does not have to be. With dental sedation, you can relax and go through any dental procedure.

What is Sedation Dentistry?

Dental sedation uses drugs and medication to relax and calm you before and during a dental procedure. Although sedation and anesthetics are used interchangeably, they are different. A local anesthetic numbs your gums and is used on most dental procedures. Sedation dentistry, on the other hand, relaxes you. Most times, a sedation dentist near you can use both local anesthesia and sedation dentistry.

Who Needs Dental Sedation?

Our dentist in The Colony, TX, can use dental sedation on anyone. But, it is mostly recommended for people with:

  • Severe dental phobia and anxiety
  • Sensitive teeth
  • Low threshold of pain
  • Severe gag reflex
  • The dentist is performing a complex procedure like wisdom teeth extraction
  • Local anesthesia hasn’t numbed the gums as expected

Does It Cause Unconsciousness?

Although most people assume dental sedation causes unconsciousness, it doesn’t. Several types of sedation dentistry are available, and the dentist can choose one based on your dental phobia and the type of dental procedure.

  • Inhaled sedation

Inhaled sedation or laughing gas is the most commonly used sedation. It is mild, has few side effects, and wears off quickly. The dentist will administer the laughing gas via the nose mask. Since it takes effect immediately, the medication will be given five minutes before the procedure. It also wears off immediately and therefore is used on children too. The one downside with the inhaled sedation is that it can only be used on mild and moderate dental procedures.

  • Oral sedation

Mouth sedation uses a pill and is stronger than the inhaled sedation. The pill takes time to manifest because everyone metabolizes medication differently. That’s why the dentist will give you the medication a few hours before the procedure. While it does not cause you to sleep, you might doze off a bit and can be woken up with a little shake.

Oral sedation, however, does not give the dentist a chance to adjust the dosage during a dental procedure.

  • IV sedation

IV sedation is similar to pill sedation, but the medication is administered via the veins. It is stronger than oral sedation, but it will not cause you to sleep. However, you will not be able to recollect the procedure.

With the IV sedation, the dentist will be able to adjust the dosage of the medication. This makes it suitable for moderate and severe dental procedures.

  • Deep sedation

General and deep sedation is the only sedation that causes you to sleep. That’s why it is used for complex dental procedures like dental implant surgery or impacted teeth extraction.

Deep sedation does not wear off quickly, and at times the dentist will use medication to decrease the effects.

While all dentists can give oral and inhaled sedation, only licensed dentists are allowed to administer IV and deep sedation.

How Long Does It Take to Wear Off?

How long it takes for the sedation medication to wear off will depend on the type of sedation, dosage, and your body’s metabolism. We metabolize medication differently, and it may take time for it to wear off.

Laughing gas wears out quicker than the other types. The dentist will only lower the inhaled gas and increase oxygen levels. Although you might resume normal activities after laughing gas wears off, it is not advisable. Therefore, when visiting a dental clinic near you, it is recommended you go accompanied by a family or friend.

Is Dental Sedation Safe?

Sedation dentistry is safe and does not cause any side effects if administered correctly. You may, however, experience mild headaches, dizziness, dry mouth, and nausea. These side effects will wear out after some time.

Schedule an Appointment

You don’t have to be afraid of the dental clinic. Visit Main Dentistry for your dental checkup and cleaning, and dental sedation will make the procedure bearable.