Imagine undergoing a complex dental treatment such as a root canal, extraction, or oral surgery. When your treatment is complete, you have no recollection of the time it took, the pain, the noise, or the discomfort you were expecting.
We are pleased to offer our patients the option of comfortable, safe, and effective sedation dentistry. Patients who benefit from sedation dentistry have:
- Fear or anxiety of being at the dentist
- Difficulty sitting still for long periods of time
- A hard time getting (and staying) numb from anesthetics
What is sedation dentistry?
Sedation dentistry enables a doctor to provide a variety of dental treatments safely and comfortably for patients who experience anxiety when visiting the dentist. There are several benefits to sedation dentistry, including:
- No memory of undergoing the procedure
- No sense of time while under sedation
- No sense of smell or sound
- No fear or anxiety during treatment
Patients who have undergone a procedure using sedation dentistry will tell you it is a simple, relaxing way to experience dentistry.
I am nervous about being unconscious; what levels of sedation are available to me?
There is no need to be nervous about having sedation dentistry at our practice. We are licensed by the American Dental Association, and you will find we are both respectful and professional at all times.
Sedation dentistry is closely regulated by law, and there are two sedative states at which Dr Gaddy can administer your treatment: mild sedation and moderate sedation
- Mild Sedation — Anxiolysis is the lightest form of sedation dentistry. It is often used for patients with mild anxiety, longer procedures, or more complex situations. Mild sedation is usually administered with nitrous oxide and/or oral Valium. You remain awake throughout the entire procedure and are able to breathe on your own, but you will feel a great sense of relaxation. Patients typically recover from anxiolysis sedation within a few hours after the procedure is complete. Nitrous oxide inhalation (laughing gas) by itself results in relaxation during treatment but usually no lingering effects once the patient leaves the office. For patients using Valium a responsible adult will need to be available to drive you home.
- Moderate Sedation — Used for patients with moderate dental anxiety and for patients who need longer or more complex procedures, conscious sedation often refers to the use of stronger oral sedatives. With conscious sedation, you will be very sleepy throughout your procedure and in a deep state of relaxation. It is recommended that patients who receive conscious sedation have a parent, spouse, or friend drive them to appointments and stay with them afterwards because it can take several hours for the sedative to wear off. The Halcion we administer orally has an amnesia quality so most times patients remember very little of their visit with us.
How are our sedatives administered?
- Inhalation — Nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, is the most frequently used method for easing mild to moderate anxiety. Recovery is quick, so you can resume your normal activities immediately.
- Oral — An extremely common technique for dental sedation is oral sedation. It is easy and does not require the use of needles. You will be given a prescription pill which, taken about an hour before your appointment, will have you fully relaxed by the time you arrive at our office.
Please contact our practice to schedule a consultation, learn more about sedation dentistry, and find out which sedation dentistry method may be right for you.