January 3, 2017
You’ve never been a big fan of going to the dentist, but you’ve recently discovered something called sedation dentistry. This is an approach doctors use to help their most nervous and fearful patients (just like you) get treatment with ease. You see that there are a few ways for you to be sedated, but is one better than the other? Which one would be right for you? Today, Dr. Edward Dougherty Jr., your sedation dentist in Ocean City, is going to discuss the different ways he sedates his patients, and why he chooses to use each one.
This is the form of sedation most people will be familiar with, and is commonly known as “laughing gas.” This is the lightest form of sedation that we offer, and it is best for patients who are only a little nervous about going to the dentist. We primarily use it during standard check-ups and cleanings. A patient simply wears a mask over their nose and breathes in the odorless gas. After about a minute, they will be overcome with a warm, relaxing sensation they can feel throughout their entire body. Once the treatment is over, the mask is removed and the patient should feel completely normal in a matter of minutes, able to go on about their day.
A patient who is going to have a more involved treatment (such as a filling or crown) might require more sedation than nitrous oxide can provide. For that, we use oral sedation, which would involve you taking a prescribed pill the day of your visit. You will take it at home so that by the time you reach the office, you will be completely mentally and physically sedated. Oral sedation eliminates any discomfort you might feel and helps time fly by quickly. It is strong enough, however, that it is required that a friend or family member drive you to and from the office on the day of your treatment. They need to keep an eye on you the rest of the day as well. You should feel completely normal by the next morning.
3. IV Sedation
For patients who need procedures such as extractions and root canals, we offer IV sedation. This is our deepest form of sedation, and is administered via a painless injection in your arm. IV sedation allows Dr. Dougherty to adjust your sedation level as the procedure progresses, meaning that your comfort will be ensured the entire time. While it is not guaranteed, many patients completely fall asleep or have no memory of their treatment afterward. This approach allows us to treat even the most sensitive of patients safely. As with oral sedation, you need to have a friend or family member drive you to and from the office, as well as monitor you afterward. The sedative should be completely worn off by the next morning.
Which One Is Right For Me?
This is a choice best left up to Dr. Dougherty. When you come to see him, he will choose your method of sedation based on the procedure you need as well as your comfort level. Each approach can be fine-tuned to your specific needs, and you can be confident in whichever he chooses will help provide you a positive, painless experience.
Still Have Questions?
The team at Delmarva Sedation Dentistry understands that you might be nervous to visit the dentist. You are far from alone. That is why we will always take the time to listen to your concerns and make sure you always know what to expect when you come visit us. We’re here to take care of you mentally as well as physically, and you can trust that your comfort and safety are always our top priorities.
If you’d like to know more about the different methods of sedation, or want to schedule a consultation, please give us a call today.
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