Oral Sedation Dentistry
It’s not unusual for people to feel nervous about visiting the dentist but, for some, the anxiety far surpasses a few jitters. These patients may have a severe fear of needles, an exceptionally sensitive gag reflex, extremely sensitive teeth, or difficulty becoming numb from oral injections. If you struggle with dental anxiety or suffer from one of the aforementioned conditions, oral sedation or nitrous oxide may be a solution.
Oral sedation dentistry involves the use of a prescription medication, taken approximately one hour before the scheduled dental visit, to keep the patient calm and comfortable. The patient arrives at the dentist in a deeply relaxed, though fully responsive state. During the procedure, patients are conscious, but mentally detached from procedure itself. The effects of the sedative usually last about six hours and require the patient to be driven to and from the appointment.
Nitrous oxide, also known as “laughing gas,” can also offer anxious patients a pain- and anxiety-free dental experience. After administering the gas, patients are put in a relaxed, yet fully responsive state where they will be unaware of any pain or stressful factors during the procedure. Nitrous oxide typically allows patients to leave the dental office alone on their own and immediately resume normal activities afterward. Treatments like oral sedation and nitrous oxide make it possible for dental procedures to be completed in less time and while causing less stress, resulting in a better dental experience and shorter recovery times for the patient.