Sedation Dentistry

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Rest Easy and Eliminate Anxiety with Our Sedative Treatment Options

When thinking of making that trip down to the dentist’s office make you a bit nervous? If you suffer from dental anxiety, you are not alone. Almost 40 million Americans have some amount of dental phobia.

Image Dental offers sedation dentistry to help give our patients an anxiety-free visit. From general cleaning to more in-depth dentistry procedures, sedatives can provide a smoother ride for those who may undergo high anxiety or fear during dental visits. Sedation dentistry employs the use of medication to allow for a more tranquil experience.

Levels of Sedation

There are different levels of sedation that can be used depending on the intensity of anxiety of the patient as well as the invasiveness of the procedure. The levels of sedation range from an alert but relaxed state to the use of general anesthesia where one would remain unconscious during the entire procedure. The levels in between vary by degree of consciousness.

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Types of Sedative Treatments

The lowest type of treatment in terms of effects is an inhaled sedation method. Your dentist will administer a particular amount of nitrous oxide–commonly known as “laughing gas”–combined with oxygen which is then inhaled through a mask during the procedure. This type of sedation is used very often, even during routine cleanings. Patients will likely experience a relaxed, but alert, state that can allow any procedure to feel less stressful or worrisome. Nitrous oxide also wears off quickly which can usually allow for patients to safely drive themselves home after an appointment without concern for alertness.

Sedation by means of oral medication is another option for anxious patients. A sedative medication is administered about an hour before the procedure and can be given in a range of doses. Most often, one is able to stay awake with this type of sedation, but occasionally patients may drift off. If this does happen, you can be very easily awakened.

IV sedation is similar in its effects to oral sedation but acts much more quickly so there is no additional wait time to begin. Furthermore, if a sedation medication is taken orally, there is no way to lessen or increase sedation once swallowed. With IV sedation, your dentist can increase or decrease the level of the drug thus allowing the patient to experience the relaxing effects without the potential loss of consciousness.

Lastly, general anesthesia is a deep-level sedative method that will take you under to a completely unconscious point–or close to it. This usually is reserved for more invasive procedures.

In addition to whichever sedation method is right for you, your dentist will also often employ a numbing agent in the area that he or she is working on in order to keep patients from feeling any unnecessary discomfort.

Contact Image Dental Today!

If you are avoiding the dentist because of anxiety or fear–and many do!–rest assured that our Stockton dentist office takes every step to create a comfortable, anxiety-free experience for all patients. Give us a call today at (209) 955-1500 or request an appointment online to talk to us about how we can make your dentist office experience a great one!

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