Dental Tips Blog

Oct
16

What Does it Feel Like to Get Dental Sedation?

“Sleep through your treatment!”

“You won’t remember a thing!”

“Banish dental phobia forever!”

You’ve heard a lot about sedation dentistry. Although it sounds like an ideal setup, you’re a little concerned about what to expect.

Here’s an idea of what you might experience with dental sedation.

Nitrous oxide: This is a colorless and odorless gas that you inhale through a nosepiece. The gas is a mixture of oxygen and nitrogen.

What you’ll feel: The nasal hood might be pleasantly scented and the air will feel cool, but there’s nothing uncomfortable about the process. Within minutes, your head may buzz, hearing may dim, and your limbs grow numb. You might feel weightless and the sensation could bring on a case of the giggles. You remain conscious the entire time. The effects wear off instantly.

Oral sedative: This comes in a pill or syrup that you take within an hour or so of your procedure. This sedative is only available with a prescription.

What you’ll feel: Although you don’t lose consciousness, you’ll get very sleepy and numb. You will respond to questions and commands during treatment but you won’t remember much afterwards. The medication can last for an hour or so after the procedure.

IV sedation: A needle inserted into a vein provides a steady stream of anesthesia that acts much like the oral version. The effects are also similar to the oral sedative.

What You’ll feel: When you wake up, you’ll feel groggy like you took a heavy nap. It can take a couple of hours for the effects to fully wear off.

Have an open discussion with your dentist well before the procedure so you can select the sedation option that’s safest and most comfortable for you.

Posted on behalf of:
Converse Dentistry
6634 Binz-Engleman Rd #109
Converse, TX 78109
(210) 960-8204

Oct
16

5 Ways to Relax for Your Dental Appointment

Most of us get a little nervous before having dental treatment. Even if you don’t have a full-out dental phobia, the anxiety is enough to ruin your day. What can you do to de-stress before the distress? Dental professionals recommend the following effective tricks.

  1. Bring Warm Layers!

Your body tends to relax when you stay comfortably warm. It’s easier to put on layers in a dental office rather than take them off, so you may find your local dental office to be a little cool. Take your favorite warm blanket to your appointment or dress in loose but warm clothing.

  1. Essential Oils

Yes, a lot of dental professionals love the smell of toothpaste, rubber gloves, and alcohol wipes. But if you prefer to not let those scents remind you where you are, apply a few drops of calming oil like lavender to your upper chest.

  1. Music Is A Must

Dentists commonly advise patients to bring along their favorite music and earphones. This drowns out the unwelcome drilling noises!

  1. Eat A Light Breakfast

Unless instructed otherwise for medical reasons, make sure you have a little healthy food in your stomach. You’ll stay in control of your system when your body is properly fueled. Low blood sugar and a “hangry” attitude won’t help you find your Zen in the dental chair!

  1. Dental Sedation

If all else fails, dental sedation is an excellent option for those who suffer from dental anxiety.  Dental sedation ranges from a mild sedative such as nitrous oxide (also known as laughing gas) to stronger oral conscious sedation and IV sleep sedation.

Ask your local dental team for more tips on getting your chill on before your teeth get their drill on!

Posted on behalf of:
Smile Avenue Family Dentistry
9212 Fry Rd #120
Cypress, TX 77433
(281) 656-1503

Oct
8

Will My Insurance Cover Dental Sedation?

Sedation as used in dentistry can help patients who:

  • Need lengthy or multiple treatments
  • Have a hard time sitting still in the dental chair
  • Suffer from dental phobia
  • Can’t tolerate needles

You may be thinking about getting sedation to improve your next dental treatment experience. Whether laughing gas, an oral medication, or an IV drip, there’s a method that’s sure to fit your needs. But who is going to foot the bill? 

Dental Sedation Insurance Coverage

Most insurances treat sedation therapy as an unnecessary “extra” in dental care. Veneers, teeth whitening, and dental sedation tend to be lumped together in the luxury category. If you want to try a sedative method, then you’ll likely have to pay for that out of pocket.

Medical insurance may pick up the cost if sedation is absolutely necessary to ensure you get the dental treatment you need. Your dental insurance may also provide some coverage, but the sedation cost will probably be taken out of your regular dental benefits.

Your best bet is to contact your insurer directly to find out what benefits you’re entitled to and even to get a pre-determination.

How To Afford Dental Sedation

You may try a dental savings plan which doesn’t cap your benefits but helps you get a discount on any procedure. Talk with your local dental office about in-office financing and payment plans that can make sedation dentistry a reality. Some types of sedation are more affordable than others!

Don’t let worry over the cost of dental sedation hold you back from giving it a try. Your dental office will help you find the best way to afford any procedure you need.

Posted on behalf of:
Cane Bay Family Dentistry
1724 State Rd #4D
Summerville, SC 29483
(843) 376-4157

Sep
29

How Long Does Dental Sedation Last?

Are you curious how long dental sedation will “knock you out?” For starters, which kind of dental sedation do you plan on having? The human body responds differently to each kind.

Nitrous Oxide

Better known as laughing gas, nitrogen is administered via a hose that you breathe in from. It’s mixed with oxygen and delivered slowly until it achieves the optimum effect on you. Then, trained dental staff closely monitor you and maintain that level of comfort with the inhaled gas.

As soon as your treatment is done, the dentist or assistant will switch you back to oxygen until the gas mixture has left your system. Within a matter of minutes, you’re back to normal.

Oral Sedation

Some dental offices will give you a medication to take about an hour before treatment. That’s how long it takes for the sedative to kick in. The drug will stay in your system for nearly 24 hours, but it is only fully effective for about two to four hours until it starts wearing off.

Even if you feel back to your usual self soon after your dental sedation appointment, it’s still advised to avoid driving for the rest of the day.

IV Sedation

Much like nitrous oxide, IV-administered sedation is kept at a constant level for as long as treatment lasts. This kind is best for lengthy procedures since it can be delivered continuously without worry of it wearing off. Once your treatment is done, the IV is stopped.

The effects of IV sedation begin to fade almost immediately, but you will feel woozy for some time. You should have a companion escort you home after treatment and keep an eye on you for some time.

Ask your dentist which dental sedation method is best for you.

Posted on behalf of:
Dental Care Center At Kennestone
129 Marble Mill Rd NW
Marietta, GA 30060
(770) 424-4565

Aug
3

Is Dental Sedation Safe for Children?

Dental sedation uses specific drugs to help someone relax during a procedure. It’s used for patients of all ages, but is especially good for children who may be too young or nervous to tolerate treatment.

Sedation keeps the routine treatments routine; and the complicated procedures simpler and comfortable.

Sedation in Pediatric Dentistry

Kids qualify for the same dental sedation techniques as adults do. The doses are just a lot smaller!

These include oral medication, laughing gas, IV-administered sedative, and general anesthesia. If your child ever needs general anesthesia, that’s provided in a hospital or dental surgery.

The other methods are very low-risk to administer as long as everything is carefully planned.

Make Sedation Dentistry Safer

Parents play a key role in ensuring that their child enjoys a safe and successful procedure. It’s essential to follow the dentist’s instructions to a T.

These often include:

  • Dietary restrictions in the hours before treatment
  • Dressing the child in loose-fitting clothing
  • Sharing the child’s complete medical history
  • Not bringing along other kids who can cause a distraction
  • Comforting their child

Everyone is closely monitored during sedation treatment, but kids in particular. The dental team will be constantly checking things like blood pressure, temperature, and heart rate.

There’s no reason to be nervous about kids getting sedation when everyone does their part to keep treatment safe!

When Your Child Needs Sedation

Remember that sedation helps your child to stay safe and relaxed during delicate dental procedures. They’ll feel much better about dozing or giggling their way through treatment than struggling in fear and frustration.

Talk with your dentist about which sedation options are best for your family.

Posted on behalf of:
Dr. David Kurtzman D.D.S.
611 Campbell Hill St. NW #101
Marietta, GA 30060
(770) 980-6336

Jul
31

Is Laughing Gas Dangerous?

Nitrous oxide (N2O) is a colorless gas that depresses the nervous system. It dulls pain and mildly alters awareness. Sounds may be distorted and some people report feeling numb or tingling limbs while inhaling this gas.

This may sound more like a street drug than a medical treatment. In reality, nitrous oxide, better known as “laughing gas,” is an effective and safe anesthetic used by many dentists for mild dental sedation to help relieve anxiety and make dental treatment more comfortable. But, go back nearly two centuries, and you’ll find that N2O was the complete opposite of a medical standard.

Soon after the discovery of this gas, it became a carnival attraction. Whole crowds would assemble to breathe in nitrous oxide and revel in the effects. When a dentist in the 1840s attempted to use nitrous as an anesthetic, he was ridiculed.

Nowadays, we know that recreational use of nitrous oxide can be dangerous. This is primarily because inhaling too much of the gas by itself can deprive your brain of oxygen.

Today’s dentists administer the gas in the safest way possible. The flow is combined with an oxygen tank so that the patients never lose too much air. Only trained dental professionals can give someone nitrous oxide.

On the plus side, nitrous has no residual effects and doesn’t accumulate in the system. Each dose is carefully measured and can be almost instantly reversed, if needed. It’s a very low-stress anesthesia technique that’s popular for children’s appointments.

The FDA regulates the use of nitrous oxide and you can rest assured that the controlled setting of a dental office is a safe place to use it. If you want to ease dental anxiety, ask your dentist whether laughing gas is right for you.

Posted on behalf of:
Town Center Dental
1110 State Route 55, Suite 107
Lagrangeville, NY 12540
(845) 486-4572

Jul
25

Why People Without Dental Phobia Are Trying Sedation Dentistry

Have you been seeing more ads for “sleep dentistry?”

It’s becoming a popular selling point for dental offices targeting a population of fearful patients.

While most of us don’t exactly enjoy the prospect of dental work, not everyone has a morbid fear of the dentist. Even so, you might be surprised to see how “sleep dentistry” can make the experience a lot more pleasant for anyone.

What Happens When You “Sleep?”

Actually, you aren’t really sleeping your way through treatment.

Dental sedation isn’t the same thing as general sedation which knocks you out cold. Instead, it relaxes you to a point that you no longer feel anxiety. Even your ability to feel pain is dulled.

The sedative usually comes as a pill or syrup taken before the appointment or an IV medication administered during treatment.

Most people have little memory of their appointment after having sedation. This is in spite of the fact that they were fully conscious, albeit rather woozy. As a result, they “wake up” feeling like they napped through the process.

Thus the “sleep” dentistry!

Why Give Sedation Dentistry A Try?

If you’ve never had trouble with a simple filling so far, why would you bother trying out dental sedation?

Simply, it comes in handy for really long appointments. If you don’t feel like sitting bored for an hour or two for your next root canal, some sedation can make it pass like two minutes. This is also a great way to get multiple projects (remember those three fillings and two crowns you’re due for?) done in one sitting.

Ask your dentist today how a little sedation could improve your next appointment.

Posted on behalf of:
Horizon Dental Care
1615 Williams Dr.
Georgetown, TX 78628
512-864-9911

Jul
18

3 Dental Sedation Myths Debunked

Have you heard the hype about dental sedation? It’s quickly becoming a more popular and accessible procedure than ever before.

Addressing the following three myths can help clear up any confusion about sedation dentistry.

Myth #1: Sedation Can Only Be Used For Complicated Dental Procedures

Facts: Sedation helps you relax during any lengthy, complicated, or nerve-wracking procedure. If getting a small filling is enough to make you break out in a cold sweat, don’t be embarrassed to ask about getting sedation.

The goal of this therapy is to make your treatment easier to sit through – no matter what kind of procedure that is.

Myth #2: Dental Sedation Knocks You Out

Facts: General anesthesia is the kind that puts you out for the count. That’s not the kind that most dental offices are talking about when they suggest sedation therapy.

Dental sedation comes in three methods:

  • Intravenous (IV)
  • Oral medication
  • Nitrous oxide (laughing gas)

Laughing gas is quickly reversible and very light. The other two options can make you feel sleepy and forgetful.

Myth #3: Only People With Dental Phobia Should Have Sedation

Facts: Actually, even if you don’t feel nervous about the dentist at all, you could still benefit from sedation. If you have a strong gag-reflex that could make treatment a little tricky, sedation will dull your response.

Because of neurological problems some people can’t sit still enough for delicate procedures. Here, too, dental sedation comes to the rescue.

Ready to learn other ways dental sedation could improve your next dental procedure?

Contact your local dental office to ask about sedation dentistry options available in your area.

Posted on behalf of:
Columbia Dental Center
915 N Main St #2
Columbia, IL 62236
(618) 281-6161

Jul
17

Why Choose a Sedation Dentist?

Although it may sound like something just for children, phobia-sufferers, or special needs patients, sedation dentistry holds out benefits for everyone.

More dentists these days are offering sedation at their practices to improve the treatment experience.

What Does Dental Sedation Actually Do?

Dental sedation doesn’t make you unconscious. Instead, it just alters your awareness slightly enough so that you can relax. You may nod off on your own, but you won’t be completely put under.

Sedation dentistry aims to keep you comfortable. With the help of some medication, you probably won’t remember much about your procedure once it’s over with.

There are different ways you can be sedated. These include inhaling laughing gas, taking a prescription oral medication, or having a sedative slowly introduced to your body via an IV drip.

5 Basic Benefits Of Sedation Dentistry

  • Reduced sensation helps to dull pain
  • Dozing through your treatment makes it go by faster
  • Sedation makes you feel relaxed and limits the effects of anxiety on your body
  • You can get complicated or multiple procedures finished in one appointment
  • If you have a strong gag-reflex, that will be dulled with sedation

Clearly, just about anyone can benefit from dental sedation. Why not give it a try at your next procedure to see what difference it makes for you?

A Sedation Dentist Near You

Ready to try sedation dentistry?

Talk with your local dentist to find out the options available in your area. Relief from your dental anxiety is just a brief phone call away. After setting up an initial consultation with your dentist, you can freely express your concerns and discuss a sedation option that’s right for you.

Posted on behalf of:
Seneca Family Dentistry
2860 Seneca St Suite C
Wichita, KS 67217
(316) 633-4048

Jul
12

5 Ways to Cope with Dental Anxiety

It can be almost impossible to ignore that sense of dread that accompanies you to each dental visit. If your efforts to ignore dental anxiety haven’t been working out, try these suggestions:

  1. Distract Yourself With Music

It’s perfectly fine to bring along a set of earbuds and an audiobook or soothing playlist. Make sure you talk with your dental team about how they can communicate with you during the procedure, if necessary.

  1. Book Your Appointment As Early As Possible

Anxiety levels tend to be lowest when you are well-rested. Your appointment will only be harder on you if you have more time in the day to think about it.

It’s also a good idea to avoid packing too many activities in the same day as your dental visit. That would cause you more stress just by trying to run on time for everything.

  1. Keep Warm!

If you’re chilly, then you’re more likely to feel nervous and uncomfortable. Snuggle up with a warm blanket from home, if that helps you feel better.

  1. Ask About Dental Sedation

There are many options out there for medically alleviating anxiety. In the dental office, these usually include:

– Nitrous oxide (laughing gas)

– Prescription oral sedatives

– I.V.-administered sedation

Once you try sedation dentistry, you’ll wonder what you were so afraid of, to begin with!

  1. Voice Your Concerns To Your Dentist

Your dentist has a lot of experience, but you’ll be able to trust him or her even more after simply vocalizing your questions and concerns.

Make an appointment with your local dentist to find out more ways to kick your dental fears out the door – for now or for good!

Posted on behalf of:
Marvin Village Dentistry
8161 Ardrey Kell Road
Suite 101
Charlotte, NC 28277
(704) 579-5513

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