It is normal for some people to have apprehension about going to the dentist. Whether it’s due to a past experience or some other reason, their fear often keeps them from going to the dentist for even routine care. Sooner or later, it catches up with them and a visit to the dentist becomes a feared necessity. Fortunately, Implant Dentistry of Florida offers a number of sedation methods to reduce fear and anxiety.
What is Sedation Dentistry?
Sedation dentistry allows patients to receive medication that enables them to relax while they undergo dental treatment. This is especially true for patients that suffer from dental phobia. In order to combat this phobia, sedation options are provided to patients to help reduce overall nervousness and anxiety that sometimes accompany a visit to the dentist. As a result of sedation, patients may feel as though an extensive treatment only lasted a few minutes.
Sedation Dentistry Benefits
By using sedation, patients can feel comfortable during even the most complex procedures. Patients can now receive lengthy procedures in fewer appointments while under sedation. In addition to being very helpful to patients who experience dental phobia, sedation dentistry may benefit those who:
- Gag easily
- Experience gum or tooth sensitivity
- Have a low threshold for pain
- Have a hard time sitting still
- Require a large amount of dental work
Types of Sedation
At Implant Dentistry of Florida, Dr. Brown was trained in intravenous conscious sedation at Georgetown University Hospital and in the United States Air Force. Dr. Vaughn was trained in intravenous moderate sedation at the University of Kentucky. Additionally, they both have a license from the State of Florida Board of Dentistry to administer moderate sedation. Our office offers a number of sedation options including:
- Local Anesthesia
- Nitrous Oxide
- Minimal Sedation
- Moderation Sedation
Local anesthesia allows agents to block conduction along the nerve pathways so that patients do not feel the pain. The first synthetic local anesthetic in use was Novocaine and was the top anesthetic until lidocaine was developed. Lidocaine now remains the most commonly used dental anesthetic. A few years ago, Septocaine was developed. This anesthesia allows patients to receive the same pain-free visit with half the dosage of novocaine and lidocaine.
Nitrous Oxide has been in use during dental procedures since the 1800s. It is also known as “laughing gas”, “happy gas”, or “sweet air” since it produces a slight euphoria and calming effect. The advantage of choosing nitrous oxide is that it is completely eliminated from your body about 5-10 minutes after administration has been stopped. After we stop administering the nitrous oxide, patients will breathe in 100% oxygen for 5-10 minutes and are then ready to drive home.
“Love, love, love! I have high levels of anxiety and the staff and Dr. were amazing. They walked me through every little step…. make me feel as comfortable as I possibly can be…. truly thankful for them!” -Nakia M.
For patients who experience slightly more anxiety at the dental office, we can administer oral sedatives. Among the most common anti-anxiety agents we provide are Valium, Lorazepam, or Halcion. Patients will take these tablets by mouth about one hour before the procedure that produces a very calm state. In addition, many of these medications have very good amnesia properties, meaning you may not remember much of your visit.
For patients who experience a high degree of anxiety are candidates for moderate sedation, also known as conscious sedation. This is the highest level of sedation we offer and it is administered through an intravenous (IV) line in your arm or hand. While under sedation, our staff will continuously monitor your blood oxygen saturation, pulse rate, blood pressure, and heart rhythm. With moderate sedation, you are awake and able to respond to commands but are in a state of extreme relaxation. Most patients have no memory of the procedure afterward.
Side Effects of Sedation Dentistry
Mild side effects may occur post-procedure and patients sometimes require assistance in getting home, especially with minimal and moderate sedation. After their procedure, patients may experience dizziness, drowsiness or nausea. These side effects should subside shortly but It is important to discuss your concerns with our staff during your consultation.
Why Choose Implant Dentistry of Florida?
At Implant Dentistry of Florida Drs. Brown and Vaughn have extensive training in sedation methods. They both maintain CPR/AED and ACLS certifications, as well as, regularly take continuing education classes in sedation and emergency medical management. Both Dr. Brown and Dr. Vaughn are members of the American Dental Society of Anesthesiology and the Florida Dental Society of Anesthesiology.