Many people avoid going to the dentist because they experienced traumatic care as a child, suffered painful procedures as an adult, or are influenced by the stereotypes they see on TV and movies. Even when they experience warning signs like pain in the mouth, many people avoid seeking treatment because of the fear they experience. At our office we understand these feelings and want to help. Whether you just need a routine cleaning or a brand-new smile, we offer sedation dentistry in Santa Clara, CA to make your experience comfortable and relaxing.
Candidates for Sedation Dentistry May Have:
Sedation dentistry is used by many dentists to provide a relaxing, calming experience for patients who are afraid of going to the dentist and/or having dental procedures performed. There are many forms of sedation that can be administered in a variety of ways offering us the flexibility of three levels of sedation – minimal, moderate, and deep – depending on the level of anxiety the patient experiences.
Oral sedation dentistry allows us to relieve anxiety without the use of needles or intravenous tubes. Additionally, patients who traditionally have trouble getting numb have no problem when sedated and relaxed. About an hour prior to the appointment, you will be asked to take a small pill that will make you drowsy. By the time a companion accompanies you to our office for the appointment you will feel relaxed and calm. You will then be able to receive dental treatment without worry or anxiety.
IV conscious sedation dentistry is an effective technique for managing moderate to severe dental anxiety. While not as readily available in most dental offices, we believe it is a valuable tool for ensuring a patient’s complete relaxation during a procedure they would not ordinarily have had done due to extreme fear.
Prior to the procedure, drugs are administered intravenously. Drugs administered by IV are far more effective than those taken orally because the doctor can control exactly how much is administered directly into the blood stream. During the procedure, monitoring devices are used to monitor your heart rate, blood oxygen levels, blood pressure, and breathing. You may be awake through the procedure, but many patients feel so relaxed they fall asleep.
For certain dental procedures, we will need to numb parts of your mouth. In order to do so, medicine is injected into your gum or inner cheek. This medicine is called a local anesthetic. Lidocaine is the most common local anesthetic used in dentistry, however, there are many others. All types of numbing drugs are combined with other medications to make the numbing last longer. Numbing usually lasts several hours but wears off over time. Numbing just the area where dentistry needs to be performed allows us to perform procedures without pain or discomfort. Because you are still conscious, you can answer prompts and commands quickly and easily. And, because you have not been sedated, you can usually drive yourself home or go back to work immediately after the appointment.