How do you feel when you hear the word, dentist? Does it make you incredible nervous or anxious? For many dental patients going to the dentist is a stressful event. Now there is an option to be sedated during a dental appointment by the use of sedatives. The sedatives basically lower the awareness in the central nervous system. Sedation dentistry ranges from mild sedation using nitrous oxide to oral conscious sedation to full unconscious sedation.
Here are some reasons why sedation dentistry might be a good option for you:
Sedation can be used for when you have to have a cavity filled, as you have your teeth cleaned, or many other reasons. If you believe that being sedated during your dental appointment would be best for you, then you can discuss it with your dentist. Your dentist will be able to give you advice on what type of sedation would be the best decision for your particular case. Remember you are not alone in this as many people in the US are very stressed when the word dentist is said.
Posted on behalf of David Kurtzman
Regular dentist visits where the patient’s teeth are cleaned and a thorough dental exam is performed can be difficult for some patients who just do not like going to the dentist or who suffer from dental phobia or some other medical issue that makes it difficult to tolerate regular dental care. Often, by skipping these visits, serious dental problems occur, which are often made worse because of the fear of what the dentist will find. This results in more pain and discomfort as the problem steadily gets worse and the fear of what the dentist will find grows. Sedation dentistry is recommended to any patient that has a fear of the dentist, a dental phobia or any other condition that prevents them from getting good dental care.
Sedation dentistry ismost commonly practiced in two forms, which are often used together to treat patients that are fearful of a dentist visit or a dental procedure. In both means, the patient is breathing on their own while they are sedated. The first means of sedation is the use of nitrous oxide as “laughing gas” as it is commonly known. The gas, which is colorless and odorless, is inhaled and gives the patient a relaxed or euphoric feeling. The second common means of sedation is the use of oral sedation medications, which often leave the patient very relaxed, while in a conscious or semi-conscious state. It is important to remember that these two means of sedation are used in conjunction with other anesthetics (injections into the gums) when performing any procedure that could result in the patient’s pain or discomfort. Sedation is not used to control pain, just anxiety!
In addition to these common sedation dentistry techniques, a few dentists specialize in sedation dentistry using intravenous conscious sedation and even full, unconscious sedation which is usually performed in a hospital or surgical suite. This type of sedation is referred to as sleep-sedation or hospital sedation dentistry.
Sedation is a great option for patients in fear of having a necessary dental procedure done. Do not let a fear of the dentist cause major dental problems!
Posted on behalf of David Kurtzman
Dental phobia. Dentophobia. Odontophia. Dental Anxiety. Call it what you will, but it is no secret that the fear of going to the dentist is very prevalent in our society. In fact, by some estimates, as much as 75 percent of the population has some sort of dental phobia ranging from mild to severe.
For those who suffer from this aversion, it can be due to a past traumatic experience – a root canal gone wrong or a slip of the drill – or it could just be an uncomfortableness with someone putting their fingers inside your mouth. But dentists know the anxiety is very real and they work hard to help patients overcome it.
Options for especially fearful dental patients include various types of sedation. Nitrous oxide, also called laughing gas, is inhaled through a mask and produces feelings of deep relaxation although the patient is still conscious and able to converse with the dentist.
Other types of sedation include Valium, Xanax and other tranquilizers or what’s known as IV, or conscious, sedation where the tranquilizer is administered intravenously. General anthesia, where the patient is rendered unconscious, is generally reserved for oral surgery. Under general anthesia, patients are unable to breathe on their own, nor are they responsive in any way, physically or verbally.
Other techniques used to help patients relax at the dentist’s office include forms of cognitive therapy and a so-called “gentle dental” approach where the dentist explains procedures before, during and after they are carried out.
Finally, many dentists are resorting to turning their practices into spa like facilities. Burning candles, warmed towels, music, headphones and gardens – anything and everything is used to create a relaxed environment and to take away some of the stress and anxiety related to visiting the dentist’s office.
Have you been putting off dental care because your treatment will take several visits to the dentist and you can’t take that much time off from work? Is your busy schedule preventing you from getting much needed dental care? If so, sedation dentistry may be the answer for you.
Sedation dentistry is commonly recommended for patients with moderate to severe dental anxiety, uncontrollable gag reflex, or special needs patients who cannot tolerate traditional dental care. However, it is an excellent alternative for patients who need extensive dental care or complex dental treatments and want to get as much work done in a single visit as possible.
Sedation dentistry is becoming increasingly popular with busy professionals and other people on the go who want to minimize the number of dental appointments. Dentists with advanced training in sedation dentistry perform dental procedures while the patient is more heavily sedated than with traditional dentistry. Oral or intravenous sedatives are used to sedate the patient.
In most cases, the patient is conscious during the procedure, but so relaxed that they will sleep through the dental treatment. The patient can be easily awakened to respond to questions if needed. The patient feels no pain or discomfort and generally remembers little or nothing about the treatment.
In some cases fully unconscious sedation is a more effective alternative. Called sleep sedation dentistry or hospital dentistry, this is a very specialized type of dental practice. Procedures are done in a hospital operating room or surgical suite with the assistance of an anesthesiologist and surgical nurses.
The patient is relaxed and comfortable which allows the dentist to work more efficiently. In addition, the patient can easily tolerate lengthy dental care allowing the sedation dentist to complete several treatments that would ordinarily have required multiple visits. You can have several cavities filled, a root canal, dental veneers placed, implants placed, and gum disease treated all during single sedation visit.
If your busy schedule makes it difficult to schedule multiple dental appointments or if you simply prefer the convenience of getting all of your dental work done in one or two visits, you may be a great candidate for sedation dentistry!
Getting good dental care to help maintain oral health is vitally important for children and individuals with developmental disabilities such as autism spectrum disorders, cerebral palsy, Down’s syndrome, and other special needs patients. These patients are generally prone to serious tooth development issues, gum disease, periodontitis, and bite problems. Also, their daily oral health care is compromised by poor motor skills, intellectual impairment, and intolerance for dental care by caregivers.
The result is that these special needs patients are usually in desperate need of regular dental care, yet they are usually unable to tolerate receiving dental care in a traditional dental office. They are either unwilling or unable to sit still in a dental chair for more than a few minutes. Most dental offices lack the experience and patience needed to treat special needs patients and the patient typically ends up anxious and upset.
Hospital dentistry is a specialized area of dental practice that is well suited for providing safe, anxiety free and painless dentistry to special needs patients. Specially trained dentists provide quality dental care to patients under general anesthesia. These procedures are carried out in a hospital operating room or surgical suite with the assistance of surgical nurses and a qualified anesthesiologist.
With the patient fully sedated, the dentist can perform any type of procedure from routine cleanings to fillings, cavities, extractions, orthodontics, and deep cleanings. The patient experiences no anxiety or pain during the procedure and afterward has no memory of it. Several procedures can be performed during a single visit which reduces the number of visits to the dentist. Hospital sleep dentistry is an excellent way for special needs patients to get the dental care they so urgently need.
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