What is Sedation Dentistry? Types and What to Expect

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Sedation dentistry is one of the most comfortable and efficient dental procedures, which has been helping people deal with dental anxieties. It means for people who are about to undergo certain dental procedures that are about to take a lot of time; sedation becomes necessary to ease the pain around the affected region upon being operated on.

Some of the options that sedation dentists prefer to use are nitrous oxide, intravenous sedation, or conscious sedation. The dentists who take up the charge of sedating the patients should have optimal training as well as certification to operate on the patients.

To help you get a perspective on sedation in dentistry, you must know a survey by NIH (National Institutes of Health) stated the percentage of sedation necessity in various conditions, which includes 18% for dental fillings, 54.7% for endodontics, 68.2% for any periodontal surgery, 7.2% for the cleaning approaches and 46.5% for tooth extraction.

This statistic explains the preference level of sedation in different dental treatment approaches. Seeing this statistic, you can presume how crucial sedation is in most cases, except for dental clean-ups.

So, if you are about to get dental treatments from experts, it is better to understand sedation dentistry, its types, and what you can expect from it.

What Do You Understand by Sedation Dentistry?

Beyond the professionals, it is also important for the patients to be aware of what is sedation dentistry. So, you must know that sedation is a type of relaxing agent that will keep you at ease and calm while the dentists execute the procedures.

In the case of dental treatments, only a moderate amount of sedation is recommended for the patients. People of all ages who are in need of sedation during their dental procedures can be given these solutions as the first approach before operations. Some of the conditions where the use of sedation becomes very necessary are:

●             Patients experiencing dental anxiety

●             Overly sensitive gag reflex

●             The extreme sensitivity of teeth

●             Fear of needles

●             Feeling claustrophobic

●             Lowered sensitivity to the local anesthesia

What are the Different Types of Sedation Dentistry?

Here are the different types of sedation dentistry solutions that the professionals have to offer to attend to the special care requirements of patients. Depending on your anxiety level, health history, personal preferences, and procedure length, the need for a specific type of sedation dentistry might differ. So, to help you better understand sedation in dentistry, here are the most common types being used for the purpose:

●             Nitrous Oxide

Nitrous oxide, also known as the laughing gas, will help you be calm while availing of dental treatments. This gas will be provided to you through a nosepiece or mask, which will trigger the calming effects within the next five minutes.

The sedation dentist will control the level or intensity of the solution to adjust the dosages required for the overall procedure. Once the treatment is done, the dentist will then provide you with pure oxygen to flush out all the nitrous oxide in your body to help you be able to drive home safely.

●             Oral Conscious Sedation

It is the type of sedation that your dentist will be providing you at least an hour prior to the start of a procedure. Most dentists prefer using triazolam for the purpose, but some professionals might recommend using different medications for conscious sedation.

With this type of dental sedation, you will feel a bit groggy and might even fall into a sound sleep. But you will be able to communicate with your dentist if that seems necessary. Oral sedation will temporarily affect the motor or memory skills, due to which you will be waking up with a gentle nudge post-treatment. You will need someone to drive you home after the treatment.

●             Intravenous Sedation

It is the deepest form of conscious sedation that’s available within the dental office setting. The healthcare provider offers you sedative medications directly through the bloodstream using the IV line. During this procedure, the dentist will be monitoring your blood pressure, oxygen levels, and blood pressure.

You will adjust the dosage at all points and can also use the reversal medications when necessary. Most of the people who get the IV sedation dentistry will fall asleep and might lose their memory of the treatment at the time of waking up. It is ideal for people with dental anxiety or those who are undergoing lengthy procedures.

What to Expect During Sedation Dentistry?

When the dentists decide you need sedation before the dental procedure, they will discuss with you the health history. You must tell them about all the supplements or medications that you are currently taking.

Once the dentists have gathered all the necessary details, they will make sedation recommendations based on your specific necessities. In most cases, during the sedation process, you won’t be allowed to drink or eat anything at least 6 hours before the appointment time.

All the routine medications should be taken as per your dentist’s recommendation, without any interruption. You should be sure to tell the dentist if you are consuming any blood thinners. If yes, then you will be asked to skip them a few days before the procedure.

Upon the start of the treatment, sedative medications will be provided to you at the beginning of the procedure. You will be receiving local anesthetic for numbing the gums and teeth, but the dentist usually prefers this to make you feel comfortable upon application of the sedatives.

Only if you have chosen nitrous oxide as your sedative agent will you be able to drive home all by yourself. But for all the other types, have someone accompanying you to drive you home, as the sedation effects will take time to wear off.


So, this is a clear explanation of how oral sedation dentistry is an important pre-treatment approach for dental operations. Dental anxiety or fear of pain is something that might keep you away from quality dental care, which should not be appreciated.

Evans Family Dentistry is one of the best clinics out here, with fine dentists and modern resources to help you with rightful treatment approaches. If you think visiting a dentist and getting your oral health treated or operated on is painful, sedation dentistry by Evans Family Dentistry is introduced to help ease that feeling.

Book your appointment with us today!

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