Looking for an easier, more relaxed experience during your dental appointment? Ask about our sedation options! Sedation dentistry can help you feel safer and more comfortable during your next dental procedure and is often especially helpful for those who may experience anxiety or stress around receiving dental care. Our team at Sea Smiles Dental & Braces in Houston, TX, is experienced in the use of safe sedation and looks forward to helping you have a better visit. To learn more about sedation or schedule an appointment, give us a call today!
What Is Dental Sedation?
Dental sedation is the practice of using medication to help reduce anxiety, discomfort, and pain during a dental appointment. This is especially helpful during larger dental procedures or for patients who experience a high level of anxiety at the thought of undergoing dental treatment. Such anxiety is totally normal, and sedation can be a great way to keep that anxiety from getting in the way of your good health.
What Is the Difference Between Sedation & an Anesthetic?
You’re probably familiar with the novocaine that dentists use during many appointments to make sure that your teeth and gums are numb while they are receiving treatment. That’s what’s called an anesthetic (specifically, a local anesthetic), which is a type of medication that blocks any nerve receptors near the treatment site from transmitting pain signals to the brain.
Sedation is a little different. While sedation can help with pain, it also affects you emotionally by shielding you from any feelings of nervousness or anxiety and creating a sensation of comfort, ease, and well-being instead. If you’re used to feeling uncomfortable during dental appointments, sedation can help you have a whole new (and improved) experience. Typically, sedation will also be used alongside local anesthetic for the best results.
Is Sedation Safe?
Our team is trained to safely use sedation and to help you choose the right level of sedation for your needs. We will monitor you throughout your procedure to make sure that you are responding appropriately to the sedation medication and are not experiencing any adverse reactions.
What Kind of Sedation Do We Offer?
Depending on your needs and the procedure we are performing, we can offer several levels of sedation. From lowest to highest, these include:
- Nitrous Oxide: Nitrous oxide is a colorless gas that, when inhaled, can help you feel more relaxed and comfortable. To use nitrous, you’ll wear a breathing mask that will deliver a steady flow of nitrous mixed with regular oxygen. We typically recommend nitrous oxide to help our patients during smaller or medium-sized procedures.
- Oral Sedation: If you are experiencing a higher level of anxiety or are undergoing a larger procedure, we can prescribe oral sedation medication. This is usually taken in pill form and can help make you feel drowsier, more comfortable, and less aware during your appointment.
- IV Sedation: IV sedation is the highest level available without an anesthesiologist present, and involves using an IV drip to deliver a steady stream of sedation medication that will put you into a drowsy state of consciousness sometimes called twilight. You will be less aware of what is going on around you and will likely experience feelings of well-being as well.
Want to Learn More About Sedation?
Schedule a consultation today!