Is fear or anxiety keeping you out of the dental chair? Sedation dentistry can help you relax, remain calm throughout your appointment, and have productive dental visits. At Optima Dental Spa, we’ve observed that sedation dentistry has helped the overall anxiety level for many of our patients to progressively decrease over time. It provides a safe and effective way to help you get the healthy, beautiful smile you’ve always wanted.
What Is Sedation Dentistry?
We use commonly prescribed anti-anxiety medication to help you relax. The intensity can vary from mild relaxation to sedation so deep that you probably won’t remember anything about your appointment. You can discuss with us your needs and previous experiences, and we will help you decide the level you want.
Levels of Sedation
There are three basic levels offered—mild, moderate, and deep sedation. Each level involves a different technique, and the level that is appropriate for you, that will keep you completely comfortable throughout your visit, will depend on your anxiety level and previous dental experiences. Sometimes patients who aren’t all that anxious will also choose sedation so that more dental work can be accomplished in a single appointment.
Nitrous oxide, commonly called laughing gas, is the mildest level of sedation. So what can you expect?
- Just before and during your dental procedure, you’ll breathe in a mixture of nitrous oxide and oxygen through a nosepiece.
- You will be awake but relaxed with a sense of well-being and calmness.
- If you’ve had problems getting numb, you will find that the nitrous oxide will strengthen the local anesthetic to make you completely numb for the duration of the procedure.
- After your dental procedure, you’ll stop breathing in nitrous oxide, and the effects will be quickly reversed.
- The effects of the sedative will be gone, and you will be able to drive immediately after the appointment.
Conscious Oral Sedation
Conscious oral sedation is a moderate level of sedation achieved by commonly prescribed anti-anxiety medication that is taken in pill form. It will make you drowsy, so arrange for transportation to and from your dental appointment.
- You might be given medication to take the night before your dental appointment so you can get a good night’s rest.
- About an hour before your appointment, you will take medication to help you arrive at our office relaxed.
- During your appointment, we ensure that a staff member is always with you and that your vital signs are monitored.
- You will be conscious and able to answer questions and respond to instructions.
- Drowsiness will linger after your appointment, so you will need to relax for the rest of the day.
- You probably won’t remember your dental procedure.
This fast-acting, deep level of sedation is delivered through an IV. You will quickly become drowsy. Unlike general anesthesia, you will still be conscious. This level of sedation is beneficial for high levels of anxiety and lengthy dental procedures. You will have little or no memory of your procedure.
Tailored for Your Comfort
Many cases of dental anxiety have developed from negative dental experiences in the past. At Optima Dental Spa, we consider your specific needs to ensure your comfort. We listen to your verbal and non-verbal communication to understand which actions or words might contribute to your anxiety, and we tailor your treatment accordingly.
Due to a traumatic experience as a child I’ve had a terrible phobia of dentists. The hygienists and dentists at Optima Dental Spa are very patient and gentle with me. From cleanings to major work, they do whatever it takes to help me feel comfortable and build trust. – Tasia M.
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