Posts for tag: Sedation Dentistry
For most people, going to the dentist is as routine as getting their oil changed. But if you're like the one in ten people with severe anxiety, dental visits are anything but routine.
What may have begun as a childhood fear has turned for many people into a lifetime avoidance of dental care. Â This absence of dental cleanings, checkups and treatments can have an adverse effect on not only their oral health but their general health too.
But there are ways you can reduce dental visit anxiety, beginning first with finding a compassionate dental provider. A good dentist-patient relationship is important for everyone, but more so for people with anxiety. Building a trust relationship with a dentist who listens and accepts your fears without judging is your first step to overcoming them.
Though finding an understanding provider is important, it may not be enough in the beginning of your return to regular dental care. To help you further relax during visits, we can also provide medicinal therapies known collectively as sedation.
Although it has some similarities, sedation is different from anesthesia. The latter deadens pain sensation; sedation aims to calm your emotions. The most common sedation is taken in oral form, usually a pill (or syrup for children) taken an hour or so before the appointment. Oral sedation is often used in conjunction with gases like nitrous oxide and local anesthesia.
For a more relaxed state (especially during an involved procedure) we may use intravenous (IV) sedation. With this method we deliver the medication through a small needle or catheter inserted into a vein.
IV sedation places you in a reduced state of consciousness. But it isn't a “sleep” state as what's achieved during general anesthesia, but more of a “semi-awake” state. You won't need assistance with breathing or heart function and you can respond to verbal or touch commands. Many drugs used for IV sedation also have an amnesiac affect, so you won't remember many details about the procedure.
Depending on your level of anxiety, we can match the right therapy to induce calm and relaxation. Sedation can help you see dental visits in a more positive light so that it truly does become a life routine.
If you would like more information on sedation therapy during dental visits, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “IV Sedation in Dentistry.”
You may not be nervous at all about visiting the dentist. But put yourself in a child’s place — a routine dental visit could be an anxious experience for them, and even more so if it involves dental work.
Dental professionals recognize this and go to great lengths to make children’s visits as pleasant as possible. It’s common among pediatric and family dentists to see child-friendly exam rooms and a well-trained staff experienced with interacting with children.
While this helps, some children still struggle with anxiety. Dentists have one other technique that can ease a child’s nervousness: conscious sedation. This technique involves the use of pills, inhaled gas or intravenous drips to help patients relax.
Sedation is different from general anesthesia, which uses drugs to render a patient unconscious so they won’t experience pain. A sedated patient remains in a conscious but relaxed state: they can still breathe independently and, with the most moderate form of oral sedation, be able to respond to touch or verbal instructions.
Oral sedation may also be accompanied by other methods like nitrous oxide gas that also aid with physical discomfort. Many drugs used often have an amnesiac effect — the patient won’t remember details about the procedure, which could contribute to less anxiety in the future.
Typically, a child receives an oral sedative just before the procedure. Most drugs are fast-acting and leave the child’s system quickly afterward.Â A staff member monitors their vital signs (pulse, respirations, blood pressure, etc.) during the procedure and after in recovery. They’ll remain in recovery until their vital signs return to normal levels and then be able to go home. They should stay home the rest of the day under adult supervision, but should be alert enough the next day to return to their normal activities.
Relieving anxiety is an important tool to ensure your child receives the dental care they need. It also creates a positive experience that could encourage a young patient to continue regular dental care when they reach adulthood.
If you would like more information on conscious sedation for children, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Sedation Dentistry for Kids.”
Dental anxiety, or phobia, is a serious, and often debilitating, problem. Some individuals are so fearful of going to the dentist that they don't go at all--much to the detriment of their oral and overall health.
Your Yorktown Heights dentist, Dr. Joseph Zaky, and his staff at Dental Implant & Cosmetic PC totally understand, and they specialize in helping anxious patients relax in the dental chair and get the services they need. Dr. Zaky has advanced training in sedation dentistry--methods of administering medications that relieve anxiety.
Deciding on Sedation
When considering sedation dentistry, Dr. Zaky first reviews the individual's medical and surgical history and list of current medications. After an oral examination to determine what preventive and restorative services the patient needs, Dr. Zaky outlines sedation options, explaining how he delivers them, how they work and what to expect from them. Your Yorktown Heights dentist wishes his sedation patients be fully informed about their treatments, including sedation.
Sedation Offered by Dental Implant & Cosmetic, PC
One of the most common, safe and reliable sedation options is nitrous oxide, or "laughing gas." The American Dental Association states that for generations, laughing gas has helped patients feel at ease while getting their teeth cleaned, fillings placed and undergoing a whole host of dental treatments.
Given via a comfortable mask which fits over the nose, nitrous oxide gives people a very relaxed, even giddy feeling, to the point where they may be a bit giggly. That's where the name "laughing gas" comes from. Dr. Zaky may increase or decrease the flow of the gas as necessary, and its sedative effects wear off almost immediately when he stops the medication. The patient may drive home after this procedure.
Another choice is oral conscious sedation. Dr. Zaky prescribes medication such as Valium or Ativan to be taken just before the dental appointment or in the treatment room. Under the influence of this medication, most individuals feel very sleepy or even drop off to sleep during their treatments. Dr. Zaky and his team monitor the patient's blood pressure, heart rate, and respirations. The patient is easily awakened and often has no memory of his dental work. He must get a ride home from a friend or loved one.
Lastly, IV (intravenous) sedation confers deep relaxation. Administered through a needle in the arm, this medication is fully adjustable and allows the dentist to perform multiple, complex treatments. The patient may sleep and experience some amnesia afterwards. Vital signs are fully monitored, and the patient must be driven home.
Is Sedation for You?
If you face multiple procedures or simply dread going to the dentist, sedation dentistry could be your lifesaver. Contact the office staff at Dental Implant & Cosmetic PC in Yorktown Heights, NY to arrange a consult with Dr. Zaky.