For some people, even the very thought of a trip to the dentist is enough to cause a feeling of panic. Many people are so scared of the dentist they frequently cancel or put off making appointments. This is dangerous because neglecting to visit the dentist can cause serious problems for your teeth. Infrequent check-ups can cause tooth decay to worsen, leading to more costly and painful procedures like fillings or root canals. weblink
If you fall under the category of people who have a phobia of the dentist, sedation dentistry may be right for you.
What is sedation dentistry?
Also called sleep dentistry, sedation dentistry allows patients to be drowsy and relaxed during dental procedures; in many cases, the patient even falls asleep. Sedation dentistry allows the patient to be completely relaxed and free of anxiety during routine dental procedures. During the procedure, the patient is awake but drowsy and fairly unaware of what is going on. During that time, a team monitors the patient’s heart rate and blood pressure closely.
Dentists who utilize sleep dentistry will have their patients take a pill an hour or two before the procedure is to take place. They are then driven to their appointment, where the dentist works on the patient, who is awake but relaxed and unaware. The patient is then driven home.
Sedation dentistry can also involve the use of nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas. This puts the patient in a relaxed state, so they experience less anxiety while being worked on.
Sedation dentistry can be used for practically any dental procedure. Not all dentists use it, so you may want to do some research or ask for recommendations for dentists who use sedation dentistry on their patients.
Is sedation dentistry for me?
A number of people can benefit from sedation dentistry. It is sometimes used on children, both young and old, who have an intense fear of the dentist or who are unable to hold still while the dentist is working.
If any of the following apply to you, you may be a good candidate for sedation dentistry:
You do not make dental appointments or cancel them because you don’t like or are afraid of going to the dentist
You wait until you are in pain to see the dentist
Drills, shots, and other dental tools frighten you or cause you to panic
You do not see the dentist regularly because you are afraid it might cause pain
You have not seen a dentist in years, even though you know you should.
A unnatural fear of the dentist, even over little procedures like cleanings, often result in more serious problems for the patient later on. Sedation dentistry makes it so dental procedures aren’t as worrisome or frightening for people who have a phobia of the dentist. If you feel like sedation dentistry is right for you, talk to your dentist about your options for sedation while being treated. He or she will be glad to discuss your options with you and get you on your way to a healthy smile.