Sedation Dentistry | Nottingham Dental

Sedation dentistry — laughing gas, IV sedation, general anesthesia, etc — is important because it helps patients calm down during dental procedures. Please continue reading for a discussion of sedation dentistry at Nottingham Dental.

Sedation Dentistry

Does the thought of visiting a dentist make you tense up? Do you get anxious every time you think about being in a dentist’s chair? Most people are afraid of dental procedures to some extent. This is so common that it even has a name — dentophobia.

The fear of dental procedures usually starts when we’re children. Most dental clinics are extremely sterile and dental procedures feel invasive and uncomfortable. In fact, some people are so anxious about dental procedures that they avoid going to the dentist even for basic dental checkups. This is extremely risky because it can lead to serious gum disease and dental issues down the line.

But that’s precisely where sedation dentistry comes in. Most dentists now provide a wide range of sedation dentistry options to help you relax and calm down during your dental appointments. This can change your outlook towards dental procedures and help you get through them without anxiety.

At Nottingham Dental, we provide a wide range of sedation dentistry options, including laughing gas, IV sedation, general anesthesia, and others. Please continue reading for a detailed discussion of sedation dentistry at Nottingham Dental.

Table of contents

Sedation Dentistry
What is Sedation Dentistry?
Am I Suitable for Sedation Dentistry?
Laughing Gas
Enteral Sedation
IV Sedation
General Anesthesia
Local Anesthesia
Schedule your Appointment

What is Sedation Dentistry?

Sedation Dentistry refers to the methods and medications used to help patients relax during dental treatments. It’s sometimes also called “sleep dentistry”, but that’s not an accurate term because patients aren’t always put to sleep with sedation. In fact, in most cases, patients are awake for the procedure but they can either not feel anything or they feel extremely calm and relaxed.

The following is an overview of the different levels of sedation dentistry.

  • Minimal Sedation: You’re awake but calm and relaxed, even happy.
  • Moderate Sedation: You’re awake for the procedure but not completely conscious, you slur your speech, and you may have trouble recollecting the procedure.
  • Deep Sedation: You’re drifting into unconsciousness but can be awakened easily.
  • General Anesthesia: This puts you under completely and you lose consciousness.

Am I Suitable for Sedation Dentistry?

Sedation Dentistry is completely safe and harmless, but it’s not suitable for everyone and every situation. The dentist will discuss your overall mental and physical health and examine your medical history to determine if you’re suitable for sedation dentistry and which method to use.

The following situations may make you unsuitable for sedation dentistry:

  • Cardiac Disease.
  • Hypertension.
  • Respiratory Disease.
  • Diabetes.
  • Pregnancy.

The aforementioned factors are some of the most common conditions that may make you unsuitable for sedation dentistry. However, there are a number of other conditions as well. You should be completely honest with your dentist about your current health and medical record.

The following is an overview of some of the most common types of sedation dentistry offered in our clinic.

Laughing Gas

Laughing Gas, chemically known as Nitrous Oxide (N2O) and also known as Inhalation Analgesia, is one of the most common types of sedation dentistry methods. This is an extremely simple sedation method in which the dentist places a mask over your mouth so you can gradually breathe the laughing gas.

It induces a pleasure response in the patient and immediately calms you down so you’re relaxed throughout the procedure. You don’t lose consciousness and you can remember the entire procedure clearly so this is a minimal sedation process. It’s completely safe, has a negligible risk of side effects, and doesn’t cause any long term changes. In fact, you go back to normal almost immediately after the dentist lifts the mask off.

The dentist will make you breathe pure oxygen for about five minutes after the procedure to help purge out the nitrous oxide. Laughing gas can be administered through an injection or through a mask, but the latter is preferred. It’s also considered to be one of the best sedation dentistry techniques for young children.

Enteral Sedation

Enteral Sedation refers to a kind of sedation dentistry in which you have to orally ingest a pill or liquid. It may be used in combination with laughing gas to help you calm down. This is also a form of minimal sedation so you’ll be awake for the procedure but you’ll be calm, relaxed, and happy.

IV Sedation

Intravenous (IV) Sedation is a form of anti-anxiety sedation method in which the medicine is injected directly into your veins. This falls into the category of moderate or deep sedation, depending on the sedative medicine and dosage. You’re still awake for the procedure but your memory will be hazy and you may not remember all the details. IV sedation is usually done for invasive procedures and it also calls for recovery time after you go back home. 

General Anesthesia

This is a type of sedation dentistry in which you go completely under and are asleep for the whole procedure. This is administered via drugs injected directly into your veins along with a possible gaseous anesthetic. General anesthesia is only administered in a few complex procedures and you need considerable recovery time in the office before you’re allowed to go back.

Local Anesthesia

In addition to one of the aforementioned forms of sedation, the dentist will also probably inject local anesthesia to the specific region requiring treatment. This is done to numb the area around the mouth so they can proceed with the procedure without any discomfort or pain.

Schedule your Appointment

At Nottingham Dental, we strive to make your dental appointments as simple, painless, and comfortable as possible. That’s why we use a wide range of sedation dentistry options depending on your condition and the type of procedure. We determine the best sedation dentistry method that will cause the least discomfort and carry no side effects. For more information, please schedule your appointment today.