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FAQs about dental sedation answered

Do you want to know a bit more about dental sedation?

Here are 5 of the most commonly asked FAQs about dental sedation are answered!

How safe is dental sedation?

In modern dental care, sedation is very safe.

This is because the practitioners who are providing it to you will be trained and, depending on whether or not you receive anaesthesia (after which you will be essentially ‘knocked out’), you will be under the care of an anesthesiologist.

But if you suffer from obstructive sleep apnoea, or are obese, sedation may not be ideal for you as it can cause your airway to become blocked. If you have either of these health conditions, please talk to your dentist St Johns Wood about safer alternatives.

Who can benefit from dental sedation?

If you are nervous about undertaking dental care, or have a dental phobia, you are more likely to benefit from dental sedation.

However, it can also be useful to people who are undertaking longer dental procedures, such as dental implant surgery, wisdom tooth extraction or bone grafting. This is because it will allow you to be partially conscious while your dental team can work on your mouth without you needing to take breaks or wait for local anaesthetics to set in.

What are the different types of dental sedation?

Typically, there are 4 different types of dental sedation used in clinics today.

The first is the stereotypical laughing gas, also known as nitrous oxide, which is inhaled through a mask and will relax you and will prevent you from feeling discomfort while your dental team works on your mouth.

Some clinics can offer oral sedation, in the form of valium medication or similar, which will help you to enter twilight sedation. This is where you will feel relaxed and dreamy but will be conscious enough to respond to directions from the dental team.

Similarly, intravenous (IV) sedation will also provide you with twilight sedation but has the advantage of being longer lasting as it is controlled via a drip. And finally, if you are extremely anxious, you may be able to ask your dental team about having a general anaesthetic, which will knock you out for the entire procedure.

Are there any alternatives for anxious patients?

dental sedation

Depending on the severity of your dental anxiety, you may be able to manage the stress you feel in the dental chair through deep breathing, talking to your dental team and generally practising relaxation techniques.

Many dental surgeries now allow their patients to listen to music or watch TV while they are in the chair, so if you are unsure, just ask about the techniques that your clinic can provide.

Sedation aftercare

If you have received laughing gas, you should be fine to go about your day as usual.

However, if you received oral, IV sedation or general anaesthetic, you will need an age-appropriate family member to come along with you to escort you home afterwards.

You should take the time to relax and should not operate heavy machinery, such as a car, for at least 24 hours post-treatment, To be safe, it is also advised that you do not make any large life or financial decisions until 48 hours post sedation, as the medications used can cause lowered inhibitions in some people.

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