Sedation Dentistry: Why Patients Need It

Sedation DentistryIf you have dental anxiety, sedation dentistry can help.  At Smiles by Julia, our patients are our priority and we offer sedation to ensure that everyone can receive the dental care that they need.  This is incredibly important because we have found that many people would avoid scheduling regular dental care without it.  In fact, if you have had a bad dental experience in the past or are avoiding the dentist, please give us a call.  We are confident in our ability to change your mind and renew your confidence in the ability for dental care to be comfortable.

Is sedation dentistry important?

Yes, most definitely.  According to Colgate, somewhere between 9 and 15 percent of the adult population suffers from dental anxiety.  It can be debilitating and in 36 percent of this group, anxiety prevents them from seeking even preventative dental care.  There is one major problem with this.  Not visiting the dentist due to anxiety will often create the problems that people are fearful of in the first place.  For example, without regular teeth cleanings, people are more likely to suffer from cavities and toothaches.  Scheduling regular dental care can help to prevent these conditions and by offering sedation we make it possible for those with severe anxiety to receive this level of care.

What are the types of sedation dentistry?

We will often start with an oral sedative so that our patients can relax.  This can be in the form of a pill that is taken an hour before the appointment or by inhaling nitrous oxide.  Both are non-invasive and help people to relax before they ever sit in the dental chair.  We know that timing is important because it is the fear of what might happen that keeps people from the dentist, rather than what actually does happen.

If a more intensive procedure is being completed, we will typically combine an oral sedative with pain medication that is localized to the specific area we are treating.  For example, we will numb the upper left part of your mouth if we are treating a cavity in that area. By only using the medication that is necessary, you can continue to speak fairly clearly once we are done.  However, we understand that this isn't enough for some patients and can discuss stronger sedation when this is the case.  Some patients need an IV sedative, or if oral surgery is being performed, some people prefer to be put to sleep.  The option that will work best for you depends on the severity of your anxiety and the work being performed.

We tend to suggest the sedation method that is the least invasive and that will do the job without making you feel strange or requiring you to have a prolonged recovery time in our office.  We want you to feel your best and enjoy your time with us, so let us know if you have any dental anxiety before we begin your appointment.  This way we can create a plan for how to make your experience a pleasant one.

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