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Sedation dentistry techniques can be very helpful for individuals who are nervous about the prospect of dental treatment. Dental anxiety is very common; in fact, it has been estimated that more than 50 percent of Americans suffer from some degree of “dental phobia.” In some cases, a person’s fear of the dentist and dental treatment is so extreme that they decide to avoid receiving care at all, which can create major risks to oral and general health. Our experienced dentist, Matthew Vaccaro, DDS, offers a variety of sedation dentistry options and takes a warm, compassionate approach to dental care that can help you feel more comfortable and at ease during treatment. With our advanced sedation dentistry techniques, you may even find that the treatment experience is quite relaxing and pleasant!
What Are the Benefits of Sedation Dentistry?
There are a number of reasons why people may feel nervous or fearful of dental treatment. Some of the most common include a fear of needles or pain, discomfort with hearing the sounds of dental instrumentation or the smell of dental materials, a previous unpleasant experience with dental care, or even just a general feeling of unease about the necessity of going to the dentist. Fortunately, sedation dentistry can alleviate these anxieties. Advantages of this treatment include:
- A more relaxing, comfortable, and virtually pain-free dental treatment
- Improvement of dental problems that may become worse without treatment
- A smoother, easier treatment process for both minor and major dental procedures
During your initial consultation with Dr. Vaccaro, he will review your medical history and talk with you about the sedation techniques we offer and which option is best for your needs. Sedation dentistry can be part of just about any procedure available at our practice, including general, restorative, and cosmetic dental care treatments. If you decide to add a sedation component to your treatment, it will be included in your overall treatment plan so that you can enjoy an anxiety-free dental procedure.
Oral Conscious Sedation
Oral conscious sedation is one of the more popular methods of sedation dentistry available at our practice. This option does not require needles or any other invasive technique. Oral conscious sedation simply involves a small pill that is taken shortly before the treatment begins. Once the pill takes effect, you should enter into a state of deep relaxation, which should last throughout the treatment process. While some patients may fall into a very light sleep, the technique is not designed to make you unconscious; therefore, you should be alert enough to communicate with our dental team at all times while the treatment progresses. With that in mind, oral conscious sedation should make you feel so relaxed that the entire treatment is virtually painless. Our team will monitor you throughout the procedure.
It takes a while for the effects of oral conscious sedation to fade, so patients should arrange for transportation to and from our office.
For patients who would like to be completely asleep during dental treatment, our practice offers an intravenous (IV) anesthesia option. An anesthesiologist will come to our office to administer anesthetic drugs through an IV. This technique is often only necessary for patients who suffer from extreme levels of dental anxiety and/or those who are undergoing extensive, complex dental work. Under this type of anesthesia, you will not be alert during the procedure; however, your vital signs will be monitored throughout the process. It can take several hours for the effects to wear off, so this method of sedation dentistry will require patients to arrange a ride home from the office on the day of treatment.
Do you have questions about sedation dentistry? Please contact Vaccaro Aesthetic and Family Dentistry for more information, or to schedule a consultation with our dentist.