Sedation Dentistry FAQs

Sedation Dentistry FAQs

Dec 01, 2020

Many adults actively avoid visiting the dental clinic for a regular assessment and cleaning because of phobia. Some only visit the dentist if they have a severe dental problem that is causing pain. If that’s you, we have a solution for you—sedation dentistry.

What is Sedation Dentistry?

Sedation dentistry uses medication to relax and calm you during a dental procedure. Dental sedation comes in various levels ranging from mild to deep sedation depending on the severity of dental anxiety and the procedure’s complexity.

Who Needs Sedation Dentistry? 

Anyone can benefit from dental sedation, but our dentist may recommend it if you have:

  • Severe dental phobia and anxiety
  • Low threshold of pain
  • Your teeth are too sensitive.
  • Local anesthesia does not numb the gums as expected.
  • The dentist is about to perform a complex procedure like tooth extraction.
  • Severe gag reflex. The gag reflex is a natural phenomenon that helps protect you from swallowing foreign materials. However, when you have a severe one, it may interfere with the dental procedure.

What Are the Types of Dental Sedation?

Dental sedation comes in different types, and the dentist will choose the suitable option after the dental examination.

  • Inhaled sedation 

Laughing gas is a commonly used dental sedation because of its mild nature and little side effects. The dentist will administer the gas a few minutes before the dental procedure because it takes effect immediately. And, it wears out just as fast, making it ideal for children too. It is, however, used for mild to moderate dental procedures.

With the laughing gas, you can resume your normal activities easily since it clears out without any use of medication.

  • Oral sedation 

Oral sedation is stronger than laughing gas, and it uses a pill. The dentist will give you the pill a few hours before the procedure because it takes time to take effect. The oral sedation does not cause you to sleep, but you may doze off and wake with a slight shake.

The one downside with pill sedation is that it does not give the dentist a leeway to adjust the dosage.

  • IV sedation 

Intravenous sedation is similar to the oral one, only that the medication is given via the veins. The IV sedation is stronger, but it also does not cause unconsciousness. You will not be asleep but won’t be able to recollect the procedure.

Intravenous sedation allows the dentist to adjust the dosage based on the complexity of the procedure. It is ideal for moderate to severe dental procedures such as wisdom teeth extraction.

  • General or deep sedation 

Deep sedation causes you to sleep and is ideal to have a severe dental phobia. It can also be used if Dr. Kwon is about to perform a complex dental procedure. The dentist will be able to adjust the dosage of the medication. General sedation causes unconsciousness, and it does not wear out as fast. The dentist may use medication to reduce the effect of the drug.

General dentists can administer both the oral and laughing gas sedation. However, IV and deep sedation are given by dentists licensed to give dental sedation. It is, therefore, important to confirm if the dentist is licensed to offer dental sedation.

What to Expect?

You rarely get unconscious unless deep sedation is given. However, how long it takes for the medication to wear out will depend on the dosage and your body mechanism. For instance, people metabolize the pill differently, and therefore it may take time to take effect and wear off.

Visit the dental clinic accompanied by a friend or family because you may not resume normal activities such as driving. Also, it is not recommended to operate heavy machinery or strenuous work immediately after your dental procedure, regardless of the type of sedation is used.

Is Sedation Dentistry Safe?

Dental sedation is safe and does not have major side effects. However, you may experience dizziness, mild headaches, dry mouth, and nausea. The side effect will clear out after some time. But, if they persist, visit Woodbridge Comfort Dental Care for an assessment. Our dentist in Woodbridge, VA, will recommend the appropriate treatment.

We are offering our dental treatments across the area of Woodbridge, Virginia.

703-580-8181 Schedule Online