Most Americans would probably admit that going to the dentist is a necessity they’d just as soon skip but don’t due to the very real cosmetic and oral health benefits of routine dental care. Many individuals, however, avoid seeing the dentist due to fear.
Our team at First Impression Dental in Fresno, California, takes your oral health seriously. Led by award-winning dentist, Dr. Brett Lent, we provide state-of-the-art care in a family-friendly atmosphere that helps put people of all ages at ease.
As part of our commitment to providing you the best oral health care available, we offer sedation dentistry as necessary for individuals who need help in overcoming dental anxiety. Whether you’re here for a routine cleaning or a full mouth restoration, sedation dentistry can help you feel more comfortable.
What is sedation dentistry?
Sedation dentistry uses medication to help relieve your anxiety during dental care. At First Impression Dental, we offer various levels of sedation that range from oral medication to deep IV sedation that’s delivered and managed by a local anesthesiologist. Simply put, sedation dentistry helps counter the fear that prevents people from enjoying the many benefits of a healthy smile.
How does sedation dentistry work?
Depending on your level of anxiety and the procedure you’re undergoing, Dr. Lent may recommend:
Oral or nitrous oxide sedation
The most common form of sedation used in dentistry is oral sedation. This provides moderate relaxation and may include a pill along with nitrous oxide (laughing gas). The pill, typically in the same drug family as Valium, helps you relax. Some people even fall into a light sleep.
Nitrous oxide is an odorless gas that you inhale through a mask that fits over your nose. The gas helps you feel comfortable and relaxed but awake during the procedure. Results wear off quickly once the mask is removed.
Moderate IV sedation
With intravenous (IV) sedation, the sedative is administered through a vein by an anesthesiologist. Because the level of sedation can be adjusted continuously throughout the procedure, Dr. Lent may recommend moderate IV sedation for more complex procedures such as dental implants.
Deep IV sedation
Deep IV sedation is especially beneficial for people with a high level of anxiety who are undergoing extensive procedures such as full mouth rehabilitation. You are asleep but easily aroused with this type of sedation.
Who is a candidate for sedation dentistry?
Dr. Lent may recommend sedation dentistry for individuals who:
- Avoid going to the dentist due to anxiety and fear
- Have a low pain threshold
- Require extensive dental work
- Don’t like the sights and sounds of dental procedures
Light oral sedation with nitrous oxide is safe and often beneficial for children who have an exaggerated fear of the dentist, have trouble cooperating during a dental procedure, or find it difficult to sit still.
At First Impression Dental, we work hard to help everyone feel comfortable about visiting the dentist and encourage you to discuss your anxiety with the team. Together, we can design a strategy that helps ensure you receive the care you need and the healthy smile you deserve.
Schedule your visit at First Impression Dental today. Call the office, or request an appointment online.