Sedation for Dental Anxiety
Taking care of your mouth is important to your health. Part of this care includes regular visits to the dentist. While most people keep to their twice per year exams, even the thought of visiting the dentist or needing to undergo even a minor surgical procedure, can be a major source of stress for others. At Kooning Family Dentistry, your health is our number one concern. We understand that a visit to the office may be anxiety inducing. To help, we offer conscious dental sedation, which can help calm your mind, making a trip to the dentist a much easier experience.
What is conscious sedation?Sedation is a means to minimize pain and discomfort for those undergoing a procedure. It can be as simple as a cleaning to something more involved, such as dental implant surgery. Conscious sedation allows you, as a patient, to stay awake throughout your procedure while being unable to feel much of what happens. One of the most common forms of conscious sedation is nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas. Nitrous oxide has been successfully used as a dental anesthesia since the 1800's. This gas is combined with oxygen and inhaled. Its effects are almost immediate, causing you to feel drowsy and light-headed, as well as calm and relaxed. You will be awake throughout your entire procedure, able to communicate with your dentist the whole time.
Why sedate?You may get anxious at the thought of visiting the dentist. For this reason, you might simply find it easier to not go. In doing so, you actually put your health at risk. Regular dental exams help to detect and prevent such issues as tooth decay and gum disease. Should you suffer any of these, surgery for dental implants may be required. Nitrous oxide is inhaled, eliminating the need for needles, and causes you to relax while allowing you to be awake during your procedure and unable to feel anything. It is a simple procedure, and you are monitored throughout the entire process. Sedation levels can be altered as needed.
When your procedure is finished, the effects wear off relatively quickly, allowing you to essentially return to your normal routine, save for driving or working with heavy equipment for about twenty-four hours. Elimination of needles and being able to communicate with your dentist Dr. Chris Kooning are big advantages over Novocain or general anesthesia, which are often necessary for other forms of pain management.
Are there any side effects?As with any sedative, there are some potential side effects. You could suffer from brief amnesia, unable to remember anything about your procedure. If any dental work makes you nervous, this could be considered a benefit. You may feel groggy, which is why you should have someone with you who can drive you home and you should abstain from using any heavy machinery. There is also the chance of headache, nausea, and vomiting.
Fear of the dentist's office shouldn't stop you from making sure you maintain it. Nitrous oxide can be used to deal with dental anxiety. For more information and to discuss your options give us a call today at (503) 673-9097.