Sedation Dentistry- What are My Options?
A visit to the dentist sometimes makes people nervous. For some, this minor nervousness may be due to wondering if the dentist will find a cavity. Some might worry that the dentist will lecture them about flossing if he notices that they haven’t flossed as often as they should. These worries are normal and common. These concerns are only a problem when they cause major anxiety or a panic attack, rather than just minor nervousness.
At Chattanooga Family Dentistry, we understand that going to the dentist is a frightening experience for some, and we want to make sure that your experience with us is positive and anxiety-free. That’s why we offer sedation dentistry. Whether you are here for restorative/ general dentistry (which focuses on restoring health and preventing disease) or cosmetic dentistry (the aesthetic enhancement of your smile), sedation dentistry can help to make a trip to the dentist a positive experience.
What is sedation dentistry?
Sedation dentistry is a way to help a patient achieve a relaxed physical state during their dental appointment through the use of various techniques. We offer different stages of relaxation, from mild sedation to total unconsciousness. Your personal situation and needs will determine the level of sedation that is best for you.
Am I a candidate for sedation dentistry?
Sedation dentistry isn’t just for those who are afraid of the dentist. It allows people who have avoided treatment for various reasons to finally receive the dental care they need. Ideal candidates for sedation dentistry are:
- People with dental phobia
- People with a history of traumatic dental experience
- People who have a sensitive gag reflex
- People who have complex dental problems or need oral surgery
- People who have difficulty opening, or staying open, due to jaw joint issues
- People who are unable to sit still
- People with special medical considerations, such as Parkinson’s disease or cerebral palsy
What types of sedation does Chattanooga Family Dentistry offer?
Intravenous (IV) Sedation
IV sedation is the highest level of sedation that we offer. This involves the titration of the sedation medication into the patient's bloodstream. Relaxation is achieved quickly. The patient's vital signs and overall well-being will be monitored while sedated to ensure a patient’s safety through all phases of treatment.
For those who may be concerned about experiencing discomfort during the placement of the IV, we have a numbing cream that will help to alleviate that discomfort.
Oral sedation is another level of sedation offered in our practice. This involves taking a pill the night before your appointment, one hour prior to your appointment, and when you arrive at our office. The effects of the medication take place slower than with IV sedation due to your body’s digestion of the medicine. During your appointment, you will be very relaxed and in a twilight sleep.
Nitrous Oxide Sedation
Nitrous oxide sedation, what you may know as “laughing gas," is the lowest level of sedation that we offer. You will be able to drive yourself to your appointment and drive yourself home. When you are taken back for treatment, we will administer the nitrous oxide through your nose. Before you leave, we will administer oxygen to flush the nitrous out of your system. You will feel relaxed and calm during your treatment.
Making an informed decision
During a consultation appointment, we will discuss your sedation options with you as well as the details regarding the treatment that you need. By knowing what to expect as well as understanding your options, you will be put at ease by our staff and helped to make confident decisions regarding your oral health.
To learn more about your options for anxiety-free and pain-free dental care, be sure to contact Chattanooga Family Dentistry and schedule a consultation appointment with Dr. Lunn. We are eager to meet you and discuss your goals and needs and make a plan to give you a healthy, beautiful smile.
Call Chattanooga Family Dentistry today to schedule your consultation and learn more about anxiety-free, pain-free dentistry.