Sedation dentistry uses medication to help you relax throughout your dental procedure. You’ll have anxiety-free visits that allow you to receive the care you need. Sedation helps minimize your gag reflex and your sensitivity to pain. And it can erase memories of your time in the dental chair.
What Are the Advantages of Sedation Dentistry?
- You’ll feel calm and relaxed.
- You will still be conscious and able to hear, see, and respond to what’s happening around you, but it won’t cause anxiety.
- It’s helpful if you need extensive dental work. Even if you don’t have dental anxiety, your increased comfort allows Dr. Thomas to complete more work than would be possible without sedation.
Types of Sedation Dentistry We Offer
The type of sedation you receive depends on your level of anxiety and the complexity and length of your dental procedure. We offer mild sedation with nitrous oxide and moderate, oral conscious sedation. These options are adequate for most dental procedures. If you need a deeper level, we can arrange for an anesthesiologist to come into the office to administer IV sedation.
Mild – you are completely awake and aware during your appointment
Colorless, odorless gas to breathe in and give you a sense of well-being
It takes effect immediately and wears off immediately
You can drive yourself to and from your appointment
Oral conscious sedation
Moderate – while you are not unconscious, you probably won’t remember what was done
Anti-anxiety medication that will deeply relax you and keep you calm
You will need transportation to and from your appointment
What Can You Expect?
Before you receive sedation, Dr. Thomas will review your medical history to ensure you’re a candidate for it. We will ask you for a complete list of supplements and medications you currently take, as well as medications you’re allergic to.
Dr. Thomas will also talk with you about your fears and concerns. Our staff is sensitive to your anxiety, and we work to avoid or minimize things that trigger it. Throughout your visit, a staff member will remain with you. And we will continuously monitor your vital signs.
Also referred to as laughing gas, nitrous oxide is the mildest form of sedation. You will breathe it in during dental treatment. How will it affect you?
- Before: It’s administered in our office so you won’t receive a sedative from us to take in advance. Follow Dr. Thomas’s instructions regarding any prescription medication you already take.
- During: You’ll be alert but feel a sense of well-being.
- After: At the end of the appointment, we reverse it by giving straight oxygen for about two minutes. You’ll then be alert and able to drive and go back to your normal activities immediately after your appointment.
Oral conscious sedation
Dr. Thomas will give you anti-anxiety medication that provides moderate sedation.
- Before: You’ll take the medication as instructed by Dr. Thomas and arrive relaxed for your appointment.
- During: You’ll be deeply relaxed throughout your procedure but able to respond to instructions and commands.
- After: The drowsiness lingers, so in advance of your appointment arrange for transportation to and from our office. You probably won’t remember much—or any—of what happened during your dental visit.
Will Your Insurance Cover Dental Sedation?
Each insurance plan is different, so contact your provider to ask about plan benefits for sedation dentistry.
Excited About Anxiety-Free Dental Visits?
We’re excited for you. Many of our previously anxious patients now look forward to their visits with us. Call us to schedule an appointment with Dr. Thomas or complete our Request an Appointment form.
“I’ve always been terrified of dentists, but Dr. Thomas is calm and soft-spoken, and he made me feel so relaxed. I didn’t feel a thing!” – Sharon H.