Not everyone needs to be sedated when they visit the dentist, but for a portion of the population, sedation dentistry is the only way they can get critical dental work done. Estimates indicate that as many as 9 to 15 percent of all Americans avoid going to the dentist because of fear. Since oral health is so critical to overall health, avoiding the dentist because of a dental phobia could cause significant harm over time.
As the name would indicate, sedation dentistry is having dental procedures performed while under the influence of drugs that increase calmness or induce a state of relaxation. For someone who is unable to have dental procedures performed without these drugs, this can be a critically important part of the oral health process that allows them to get the treatment they need without the fear, anxiety, and stress. There are several types of sedation that you can choose from, including:
Not everyone needs sedation dentistry, but for those whose fear of the dentist is so severe that it gets in the way of normal checkups, sedation is often the best choice. If you or a family member has been putting off going to the dentist and has significant oral health needs, it makes sense to choose sedation as an option. For someone who is generally comfortable with the dentist’s visit, but who might be worried about needles, pain and discomfort, or the sounds of tools used in dental offices, a lower-level sedation may help that person relax.
For those whose phobia is so extreme they are unable to even go into the dentist’s office without experiencing a high level of anxiety, oral or intravenous sedation are often going to be the best choice. This is especially true if you have severe pain or decay that has gone for a long time without treatment. IV sedation will allow the person to get through the visit with little or no awareness of the procedure while it’s happening and virtually no recognition of what happened afterwards.
Another situation when sedation might make sense is for someone who has a physical disability that makes it difficult for that person to remain comfortably in a chair for long periods of time.
If you think sedation dentistry would be beneficial or you’ve avoided the dentist because of a fear of what might happen, call Caring Smiles Dental Clinic today.