Sedation is an incredible way to stay comfortable through your whole dental appointment. Depending on your dental needs and the level of sedation required, your dentist will use one of the following sedation methods:
Nitrous Oxide (NO2)
Sometimes called laughing gas, Nitrous Oxide, is an odorless colorless gas that helps one stay relaxed and comfortable through a dental procedure. It is commonly delivered through a mask in combination with oxygen. Nitrous oxide produces a very light form of sedation that is extremely safe when professionally administered. It is very popular because it is effective, it works fast , and it wears off quickly.
Some patients experience anxiety before their dental appointments. Anxiolysis simply means the prescription of a single dose of a tranquilizer, like valium, to calm and relax a patient before their treatment starts. Sometimes the patient takes the pill at the office, and sometimes the dentist prescribes it for the night before or the morning of the appointment. These anti-anxiety oral medications are very safe and effective when prescribed by your dentist.
Oral Conscious Sedation
Oral Conscious Sedation, or OCS, has become a very popular method for patients to have pleasant and comfortable dental experiences. Imagine that instead of pain, fear, and anxiety, an appointment can make you feel calm, comfortable and relaxed. It can be this way with oral conscious sedation.
Typically a patient takes one or two prescribed pills and hour before their appointment. After your companion drives you to the office, you relax in the dental chair under a warm blanket, while special monitoring equipment is used to ensure your total comfort and safety. The dentist assesses you to see if you need more medication, and only begins work when you are totally relaxed and comfortable. Very often, patients remember little or nothing from the appointment, and the whole visit just feels like a dream!
IV Sedation (Intra-Venous)
When the sedative medications are delivered through an IV in the arm of the patient, this is known as IV Sedation. An IV can create a very light conscious sedation, or can be used to produce a deeper sedation, depending on the needs of the patient. As with other sedation methods, IV sedation is extremely safe and effective when performed by a highly trained dentist.