Sedation - General or Intravenous
It has been discovered that seventy-five percent of most Americans suffer from dental anxiety. Around ten percent have been documented to have a chronic fear that could be bordering on phobic. One of the greatest causes of concern stems from nervousness and uncertainty regarding pain. The prospect of relief can be something that guides many patients to finally seek out dental assistance, especially when it is for an area that is probably already very sensitive and quite tender. Malmquist Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, our team understands how important it is to have multiple methods of management available in anticipation of your individual needs and wants to help ensure your progress can be as relaxed and tranquil as possible.
Getting Cozy in The Chair
Because so few people enjoy pain, we like to keep several options on hand for alleviating many of the discomforts that can come with having something medically restored. From a numbing swab on your cheek to a hefty dose of nitrous oxide, there is a generous selection for you to choose from. There are several factors that need to be discussed so we can determine what would work best for you. Some drugs help with pain, while others can be used to relax you. It helps for us to discuss your concerns so we can consider your distress while planning your treatment, as well as learn about your overall health history so we can foresee any possible complications.
There is no reason you should have to feel a needle, so there is a good chance a topical anesthetic will be applied to the area before any injection can ever take place. This is usually done right before a local anesthetic is to be inserted into the gumline. It can stop the nerve signals that can sense any irritation in the mouth and prevent it from registering, which effectively numbs the tissue. Generally, a local anesthetic will be used when applying fillings or preparing teeth.
Choosing What Is Right for You
If you are experiencing a high amount of anxiety, to reduce the levels, you may be prescribed a sedative for the process. One of the more commonly known elements used is nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas. It is inhaled through a mask, and the effects wear off quickly after removed. This is the only form of sedation provided, which could, in turn, allow the patient to drive themselves home afterward. For those who chose to go with nitrous oxide, it is not necessary to fast the night before the operation.
Another means, which can be an effective manner of accommodating the extremely anxious or someone who will need prolonged surgery, is through intravenous sedation. The medicine is often inserted into a vein in the arm of the patient. They will likely be awake throughout the treatment but should be pleasantly mellow and comfortable. Oral sedatives are also usually available, but because of how long they take to reach full effectiveness (which can be at least a half-hour), it is not often recommended.
General anesthesia is a form of sedation used to render you completely unconscious, which benefits those with the most extensive work needing to be done or the patient who suffers from anxiety so deeply there is no other option. It does come with low risks, such as a slight change in blood pressure, which are always carefully monitored. As we have a board-certified anesthesiologist on staff, it can be reassuring to know that you are in good hands with a highly dedicated and experienced specialist.
As one of the hardest parts of establishing good oral routines is overcoming a fear of the dentist. The knowledge that the pain commonly associated with dental issues can be easily controlled can be quite comforting. If you are interested in learning more about sedation or would like to schedule an appointment, please call Malmquist Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery at 1(503)446-6776.