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Types of Sedation Dentistry

By Stephen Rogers on December 15, 2012

Long Island Sedation DentistryDental anxiety can be paralyzing. If you are someone who suffers from moderate to severe dental anxiety, you may want to consider sedation dentistry. The Long Island cosmetic dentists of Greater Long Island Dental use different types of sedation dentistry techniques so the level of sedation you receive can be customized to your specific needs. In order to help you determine if you may benefit from sedation dentistry, we offer this overview.

The Symptoms of Dental Anxiety

Dental anxiety can range from feeling mildly nervous at the thought of going to the dentist to debilitating fear. Sedation dentistry may help if you suffer from one or more of the following issues.

  • You feel stressed or nervous before your dental examination.
  • You feel physically ill before or during your dental visit.
  • You feel like crying, or cry, when faced with going to the dentist.
  • You feel panicked and experience difficulty breathing when going to dental appointments.

Options in Sedation Dentistry

Sedation dentistry uses varying levels of sedatives to help relax patients during dental treatment. There are different options to fit your specific needs when it comes to the level and type of sedation used during your dental exam.

  • Inhaled Sedation: Inhaled sedation involves the use of nitrous oxide, commonly called “laughing gas,” to relax patients with moderate to mild dental anxiety.  The level of sedation can be adjusted depending on the amount of nitrous oxide given. Inhaled sedation is administered by wearing a breathing mask and inhaling a combination of nitrous oxide and oxygen.
  • Oral Sedation: Oral sedation is suitable for those with mild to moderate dental anxiety and involves administration through the mouth. With this technique, the sedative is generally given in pill form. The level of sedation can be varied by administering a higher or lower dosage of the sedative. A low dosage is suitable for those with mild dental anxiety, as it will only make you feel sleepy. Patients sometimes fall asleep with a larger dose, but are easily awakened after treatment.
  • IV Sedation: For those with a more moderate to severe level of dental anxiety, IV sedation may be most suitable. IV sedation is a fast acting form of sedation as the sedative is administered directly into the bloodstream.  
  • General Anesthesia: For patients with severe dental anxiety, general anesthesia may be the only option in getting dental treatment. General anesthesia is used to put patients into a deep sleep through medications. A drug can be given after treatment to reverse the sedative effects of the anesthesia, or, the patient will remain asleep until the sedative naturally wears off.

Sedation dentistry can make your next dental visit relaxed and comfortable. Even if you don't suffer from dental anxiety, you may consider sedation dentistry when undergoing major dental procedures. Sedation dentistry can make treatments like tooth extractions and root canal therapy painless. For our patients in Long Island, dental implants surgery and other oral surgery procedures may be performed with the help of sedation dentistry. Contact our offices today to see how sedation dentistry can improve comfort during treatment!

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