Like medical care, sedation has many applications in dentistry. There are different types of sedation that are useful for patients and oral health professionals. Thompson Dental offers sedation to ensure that our guests have comfortable and positive experiences with treatment. Whether a person has difficulty in clinical settings due to anxiety or if he or she is receiving a more invasive treatment, we have solutions that can be tailored to the individual’s needs.
Types of Sedation
The three types of sedation we offer are nitrous oxide, oral and conscious sedation. Each type provides different advantages and benefits for those receiving treatment.
Nitrous oxide is one of the longest-used and safest methods for providing mild sedation. Used in medical and dental settings, nitrous oxide is administered through a nasal mask in gas form. When administered, its effects come on quickly and the level of gas can be adjusted during treatment. Lastly, nitrous oxide is useful because when the gas is turned off, its effects begin to wear off quite quickly, allowing patients to drive themselves home or to work after treatment.
Another form of sedation is prescription medication that is taken in tablet form. Oral sedation normally involves the benzodiazepine class of medications that are formulated to produce mild sedating effects and stop the chemical reactions that cause feelings of panic and worry. This form of sedation can help patients who have dental phobias and it can also increase one’s comfort during treatment.
Lastly, conscious sedation has applications for surgical treatments like tooth extractions and crown lengthening. This form of sedation is delivered through an intravenous feed and produces stronger effects than oral sedation and nitrous oxide. While strong and administered through an IV, conscious sedation does not produce the same effects as general anesthesia. Patients receiving IV sedation will still be able to respond to questions and commands. Sometimes, this type of sedation is referred to as “twilight sedation” because it does induce sleepiness and causes grogginess.
Benefits of Sedation
The most obvious benefit of sedation is an increase in a person’s comfort during treatment – especially procedures that involve sensitive tissue or are more invasive in nature. The oral health system is complex, and everything from teeth to the linings of cheeks have blood vessels and nerve endings, all of which can produce discomfort when anesthetics and sedatives are not used.
In addition to increasing comfort, sedation can help patients stay still during treatment. This means that our dentist can perform procedures without obstructing movements. Working without obstruction, especially during more complex treatments, can improve the precision and speed of treatment.
Lastly, one of the most helpful benefits of sedation for patients is combating dental phobias and anxiety. Many people suffer from anxiety related to receiving medical and dental treatment. Some people even have such intense phobias associated with dental treatment that they may avoid treatment for years. When dental phobias prevent a patient from receiving routine care, oral health can suffer greatly. Our goal is to accommodate our anxious patients with helpful relaxation techniques and medications, when necessary, so that no one goes without the oral healthcare they need and deserve. If you suffer with dental anxiety, please feel welcome to discuss your needs with our team.
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The first time I used Thompson dental was last September, I had some periodontal work done. Since then I continue to get regular checkups and cleanings done at regular intervals. The staff that Dr. Thompson has is grade A, and I wouldn’t go anywhere else for dental work / treatment. Top it all off everyone that he works with are incredibly friendly and welcoming, this makes all those dentist jitters go away. Top scores for everyone at Thompson Dental.
Dr. Thompson was there for me when I needed him the most.
I had an old crown that fell, and my teeth were hurting! I tried to go to dentists, but no one would see me same day. Dr. Thompson did. His stuff was very polite and friendly. They helped me see the Dr in 15 minutes, he did an initial examination and was able to treat me the same day (only 1 hour later). I was so happy! I highly recommend Dr. Thompson to anyone.
Dr. Thompson was so great and funny and I genuinely felt like I had been going to him for years. They discovered only one small issue and I was able to get in the next day to get that taken care of. It was a small cosmetic fix to a few of my front teeth. That only took 45 minutes to fix and I was super impressed… I definitely recommend Dr. Thompson and his entire staff to help you out with your dental needs!
Conscious sedation is delivered intravenously but it is different from general anesthesia in the sense that a patient is not unconscious. While the medication might make a person fall asleep, he or she can be easily woken. Conscious sedation means that a person can respond to commands and questions if necessary. This form of sedation dentistry is beneficial for those who suffer from severe dental phobias and those receiving lengthy or surgical treatment.
The cost of receiving sedation varies on the type needed for treatment and whether one has dental insurance. For instance, those prescribed an oral tablet as a sedative or those receiving nitrous oxide will have lower costs than those receiving intravenous sedation. Moreover, dental coverage and benefits vary among carriers so out-of-pocket costs can fluctuate. When it comes to evaluating your oral healthcare costs, we recommend speaking with your insurance provider if you have insurance and with our staff so that we can give you estimates on your treatment.
Determining whether sedation is right for you is a topic that will be discussed during your consultation. When it comes to recommending sedation, it is important that our team carefully review your medical and dental history. If you are on certain medications or have conditions that might affect your respiration or blood pressure, it can interfere with the effects of sedating medications.
The three types of sedation commonly used in dental settings are nitrous oxide gas, oral tablet sedation, and conscious IV sedation. Each type of sedation has certain benefits and applications in dental treatment. For instance, nitrous oxide is useful when a filling is placed and conscious IV sedation is beneficial during surgical treatment.