A common fear of dental procedures is known as “dental phobia”. Sedation dentistry allows people who are too afraid to visit the dentist to receive treatment while alleviating their anxiety.
Oral sedation involves taking prescription anti-anxiety medication in pill form (usually Halcion or Valium). Patients will need to bring someone to drive them to and from their appointment.
Oral sedation is the most common & most affordable type of sedation. This form of sedation involves taking a pill an hour before your appointment, which allows the medication to take effect. Once the sedation takes effect, you will feel drowsy & calm. Our team will monitor your level of sedation throughout your visit.
Patients who undergo oral sedation typically do not remember their procedure, although they may recall small details afterwards. Oral sedation is an excellent option for those with severe dental anxiety or a fear of needles, as it can help them get through the appointment without feeling any discomfort.
Before giving you the pill, our dentists will conduct a health questionnaire & review your medical history to ensure that the dosage of the sedative is appropriate for your condition. This is important because a patient who does not react well to medication can become unconscious. In these cases, an escort is required to drive the patient home.
Unlike other types of sedation, the effects of nitrous oxide wear off fairly quickly. This means that you will be able to drive yourself home from your appointment, return to work & carry out other regular tasks. It is also safe for children. Before the sedation is administered, our dentists will put a mask over the patient’s nose & instruct them to breathe deeply.
For patients that are extremely fearful of going to the dentist, sedation dentistry can make even a routine visit much more manageable. Sedation can be used for everything from invasive procedures to a basic tooth cleaning. However, all sedatives have risks and everyone’s tolerance is different, so it is important to discuss your health history with your dentist to ensure that you are a good candidate for sedation.
For oral sedation, you will take a pill before the appointment that will make you drowsy. A small dose is usually enough to produce minimal sedation, but you will still be awake and able to respond to questions and instructions. A larger dose might cause moderate sedation, which can be enough to put you to sleep during the procedure. You will feel groggy afterward, but the effects wear off fairly quickly.
Many dentists are certified to offer this form of sedation and it is becoming more common in dental offices. For this type of sedation, you will need someone to drive you to and from the dentist and to be at home while you are groggy afterward. You also will need to avoid activities that require serious brain power, like operating machinery. You should also wear comfortable clothing and plan on eating a light meal before the appointment to prevent nausea.
Nitrous oxide, commonly known as laughing gas, is one of the simplest and least invasive forms of sedation dentistry. Patients breathe the nitrous oxide/oxygen mixture through a mask that covers their noses during dental procedures, which calms them, relieves anxiety and reduces pain. Nitrous oxide wears off quickly so patients can usually drive themselves home after the procedure.
Inhaled minimal sedation is the most common type of sedation in dentistry. It is also the most safe. During this type of sedation, you will be awake but relaxed, and it can be turned off at any time if needed. When the sedation is stopped, you will be given oxygen to flush out any remaining nitrous oxide from your lungs and airway. This will allow you to eat and drink without discomfort or drowsiness.
Inhaled sedation is often used with oral medication that belongs to the benzodiazepine family (Halcion, Diazepam, and Xanax). These are pills you take before your appointment to help relax you. When combined with nitrous oxide, these medications may make you sleepy, and you will need someone to escort you home after your dental appointment. In these cases, it is best if you go to a dentist with a full list of your current medications so they can ensure there are no drug interactions. They will also be able to prescribe you something to take for the night before your appointment so you can get a good night’s rest and wake up feeling refreshed.
Oral contraceptive pills are a group of medications used to prevent pregnancy in women. Each type of pill has different risks and benefits. It is important for women to understand these differences and follow the directions given by their doctor. The risk of serious side effects from oral contraceptives increases with certain medical conditions or lifestyle choices. These include smoking, drinking alcohol, having a family history of liver tumors, or having a liver disease such as hepatitis C or cirrhosis.
Fears about oral contraceptive pill side effects vary widely and are often influenced by sensational media reports, stories from friends and relatives, as well as personal values and beliefs. A balanced presentation of the advantages and disadvantages of oral contraceptive pills and clear patient information handouts are essential to overcoming these fears.