Sedation Dentistry to Help You Relax in the Dentist’s Chair

Fear of the dentist isn’t limited to children. An estimated 15% of American adults have some degree of apprehension when awaiting a dental procedure. For those who fall into this category, sedation dentistry in California may help alleviate any uneasiness. Sedation is also recommended for those who suffer from a serious gag reflex or who is sensitive to pain and don’t respond well to anesthesia.

Despite the name, patients are hardly ever put to sleep. This is why the term “sedation dentistry” is a more accurate term. During sedation, patients remain awake but are in a relaxed state. They are still conscious but may not be completely aware of everything around them.

There are several ways in which sedation dentistry in California may be administered. The most common method is through nitrous oxide gas, or more colloquially known as laughing gas. An oxygen mask is placed over your face, and the amount of gas administered will determine your level of consciousness during operation. The gas tends to wear off fairly quickly, and patients will usually be permitted to drive home on their own after being discharged from the clinic.

There is also sedation through a pill taken orally. Patients are normally given the drug Halcion, which will place them in a groggy-like state though they will normally still be awake. It is, however, not unheard of for patients to fall asleep depending on the dosage level and their sensitivity to the drug. Even if patients do nod off, they can be easily awakened with a gentle shake or tap to the shoulder.

Finally, there is also sedation by IV injection. Though less common, the method is used in lengthy operations where the IV can be continuously administered in differing dosages to keep the patient in a relaxed state.

Your dentist will use the method best suited for you depending on your level of anxiety or sensitivity. The method to be used will be explained to you in greater detail by your dentist before the operation. This may include any side-effects you might feel during and after the operation and whether you can drive or operate machinery in the hours following the procedure.

A dental operation can be very uncomfortable or even frightening for some people. This is why sedation dentistry in California can be extremely useful for those who have a tendency to get nervous or jittery in the minutes leading up to an operation.

Sedation dentistry is an available option for patients who feel apprehensive during a dental operation. Sedation dentistry in California will keep the patient relaxed and calm so that the procedure can be carried out without discomfort.


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