3 Sedation Dentistry Options for Stress-Free Dental Care

Types of sedation dentistry

On the Cutting Edge of Sedation Dentistry

When you’re looking for the best Austin dentist to handle your needs, sedation dentistry is one area to consider. Not every dentist offers sedation dentistry, so if you require sedation, you’ll want to ensure that the dentist you choose is experienced and knowledgeable. 

There are multiple types of sedation, and an experienced dentist can work with you to find the right one for your needs.

When is sedation dentistry necessary?

Most common dental procedures don’t require sedation dentistry. Instead, they rely on a local anesthetic to numb the area being worked on. This prevents pain but leaves the patient fully aware and can still allow for discomfort. A local anesthetic isn’t always enough for all patients in all situations.

Some major dental procedures require sedation, particularly those requiring oral surgery. In these cases, a local anesthetic could be insufficient to numb the entire area, or it could be vital that the patient is unconscious to prevent unexpected movement.

However, sedation dentistry also plays an important role in dealing with dental anxiety. While most people don’t exactly like the experience of going to the dentist, it can be truly overwhelming for some people. That anxiety can lead patients to avoid important dental care, ultimately affecting their health.

What does sedation dentistry do?

Sedation dentistry prevents pain during treatment but also calms and relaxes the patient. This reduces dental anxiety, allowing the patient to have a much-improved experience. For some patients, it’s the only way they could reasonably seek out treatment.

This applies before, during, and after the procedure. Knowing that you’ll receive sedation can make planning treatment more comfortable, and being sedated through the process can prevent lingering effects of dental anxiety.

There are different types of sedation dentistry that can be used in various situations. Three of the most widespread types of sedation are nitrous oxide, oral conscious sedation, and IV sedation.

Nitrous Oxide

Nitrous oxide is the sedative gas that’s known more colloquially as “laughing gas.” While it doesn’t actually make you laugh, it does provide mild to moderate sedation that calms and relaxes.

The gas is applied through a mask and inhaled. Following the procedure, you’ll receive a high concentration of oxygen for a few minutes to help remove the nitrous oxide from your system to fully halt the effects as soon as possible.

This is the most minimal form of sedation, preventing pain and easing anxiety without a lasting impact. You’ll also be able to drive yourself home once your procedure is complete since there are no lingering effects.

Oral Conscious Sedation

Oral conscious sedation is a type of sedative given in the form of a pill. There are several different medications that fall under this category with varying strengths. In some cases, the sedative can be given as a liquid, particularly in pediatric dentistry.

This is a stronger type of sedation that can make the patient feel very tired and can cause them to fall asleep. However, they remain conscious during the experience and can answer basic questions as needed. This doesn’t wear off quite as quickly, so your dentist will require you to arrange a ride home afterward.

IV Sedation

Intravenous (IV) sedation is the next step up in strength. This sedative is administered through an IV line directly to your bloodstream. During the treatment, your dentist will carefully monitor blood pressure, oxygen level, and heart rate. This setup allows the dentist to change the dose of the medication at any time with full control.

For most patients, IV sedation will cause them to fall asleep during the procedure. While this is less intense than general anesthesia for surgery, you’ll likely still have no memory of the treatment. IV sedation is generally only recommended for patients with severe dental anxiety or particularly long procedures.

Choose a dentist who provides multiple options. 

When looking into sedation dentistry options, the most important thing is to find the option that’s best for you. You don’t want to find yourself pushed into an option that doesn’t quite fit because that’s the only option the dentist has available. Instead, find a dental practice that can provide multiple choices and advise you on which is best for your situation.

A dentist who provides multiple sedation dentistry options will also be better suited to accurately assess your needs and recommend the appropriate type of sedation. Whether you’re dealing with dental anxiety or a particularly challenging procedure, you’ll get the best results by going with a dentist experienced in sedation dentistry.

Sedation Dentistry in Austin

If you need the best Austin dentist to provide sedation dentistry or other dental care, you can rely on Parmer Lane Family Dentistry. We provide quality care and a comfortable experience. Just contact us today to schedule your appointment.

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