There are many patients who suffer from some degree of stress when they have to visit the dentist. But for a minority of people, the level of anxiety becomes a barrier to coming to the dental surgery at all. This extreme fear may be related to memory of an unpleasant experience at the doctors or dental surgery during childhood, that the patient finds difficult to simply put behind them to seek the care they require. For these patients it is more acceptable to continue to experience dental pain than to find a resolution to it.
Dental sedation is also useful when a patient who is not normally fearful of coming to the dentist is undergoing a particularly difficult surgical procedure.
Dental Sedation is a safe technique that can help to treat nervous patients successfully. It can help even the most dentally phobic patients achieve good oral health and a beautiful smile.
What is intravenous sedation?
Intravenous sedation is a sedative given via a vein. This makes you feel much more relaxed about the dental treatment you are about to receive, it takes away your fears and anxieties. Although you will not go to sleep during this sedation, you may think that you have been. Many people cannot remember very much about the treatment afterwards. During dental sedation, your pulse and breathing will be monitored by a clip on your finger or thumb. You may be given extra oxygen to breathe.
What does it feel like? Will I be asleep?
You remain conscious during conscious intravenous sedation. You will also be able to understand and respond to requests from your dentist. However, you may not remember anything at all about what went on because of two things:
- IV sedation induces a state of deep relaxation and a feeling of not being bothered by what’s going on.
- The drugs used for IV sedation produce either partial or full memory loss (amnesia) for the period of time when the drug first kicks in until it wears off. As a result, time will appear to pass very quickly and it may appear as if you were “asleep” during the procedure.