There are many patients who suffer from some degree of stress when they have to visit the dentist. But for a minority of people, the level of anxiety becomes a barrier to coming to the dental surgery at all. This extreme fear may be related to memory of an unpleasant experience at the doctors or dental surgery during childhood, that the patient finds difficult to simply put behind them to seek the care they require. For these patients it is more acceptable to continue to experience dental pain than to find a resolution to it.
Dental sedation is also useful when a patient who is not normally fearful of coming to the dentist is undergoing a particularly difficult surgical procedure.
Dental Sedation is a safe technique that can help to treat nervous patients successfully. It can help even the most dentally phobic patients achieve good oral health and a beautiful smile.
What is intravenous sedation?
Intravenous sedation is a sedative given via a vein. This makes you feel much more relaxed about the treatment you are about to receive, it takes away your fears and anxieties. Although you will not go to sleep, you may think that you have been. Many people cannot remember very much about the treatment afterwards. During sedation your pulse and breathing will be monitored by a clip on your finger or thumb. You may be given extra oxygen to breathe.
What does it feel like? Will I be asleep?
You remain conscious during conscious intravenous sedation. You will also be able to understand and respond to requests from your dentist. However, you may not remember anything at all about what went on because of two things:
Is it still necessary to be numbed with local anaesthetic?
The drugs which are usually used for intravenous sedation are not painkillers. While they relax you and make you forget what happens, you will still need to be numbed. If you have a fear of injections, you will not be numbed until the intravenous sedation has fully kicked in. If you have a phobia of needles, you will very probably be relaxed enough not to care by this stage. Your dentist will then wait until the local anaesthetic has taken effect (until you are numb) before starting on any procedure.
But I’m terrified of all needles, not just dental injections!
You can get a topical numbing cream to make the site where the needle goes profoundly numb. It as also possible to spray some midazolam in the nasal cavity to partially sedate you.
What drugs are used? Are there different types of IV sedation?
The most commonly used drugs for IV sedation are benzodiazepines. These are anti-anxiety sedative drugs. In the benzodiazepines are almost always the only drug used for IV sedation. Midazolam is the first choice because of its relatively short duration of action. This means that it will be out of your system faster.
What are the main advantages of IV sedation?
Are there any disadvantages?
What about eating and drinking before sedation?
It is best to have a light meal about an hour before you come in for your treatment under intravenous sedation.
After IV sedation
|Monday||8.45 AM – 7.00 PM|
|Tuesday||8.45 AM – 5.00 PM|
|Wednesday||8.45 AM – 7.00 PM|
|Thursday||8.45 AM – 5.00 PM|
|Friday||8.45 AM – 5.00 PM|