patient undergoes a dental procedure under sedation

What to Expect When Choosing IV Sedation Dentistry

TeamSedation Dentistry

If you are apprehensive about going to the dentist, you are not alone. In fact, the majority of Americans experience some degree of fear about seeing their dentist. Up to 20% of the American population completely avoids going to the dentist due to fear or anxiety. This is a travesty, as maintaining good oral health is essential for maintaining overall health. If you’re fearful of going to the dentist, IV sedation dentistry may be an excellent option for you. Here’s what to know and expect from IV sedation dentistry.

What is IV Sedation Dentistry?

IV sedation dentistry uses an IV line to administer a combination of sedatives. The IV uses a small needle that is inserted in your arm or hand. IV sedation is very fast-acting. Within seconds of the dentist administering the sedatives through the IV, you will experience deep sedation. Patients who receive IV sedation experience a state of completely relaxed consciousness. The medication makes most patients feel like they are asleep, but you will be able to answer simple questions and follow simple directions.  

 IV sedation also leaves many with a temporary amnesia effect, so that you are unable to remember anything about the procedure. It is a stronger sedation technique than nitrous oxide (laughing gas). However, it wears off quicker than oral sedation (pills taken to sedate you before your appointment).

You will need someone to drive you to and from your dental appointment if you will be sedated for your appointment. You should also avoid driving, using machinery, or engaging in potentially dangerous activities if you have been sedated with an IV for your dental treatment.

Am I Eligible for IV Sedation Dentistry?

Patients who are fearful or anxious about going to the dentist should talk to their dentist before their appointment. You will also need to provide your medical history, to ensure that IV sedation is safe for you. Patients who may be best suited for IV sedation dentistry include those who experience anxiety and fear when faced with going to the dentist. Patients who have an extreme gag reflex are also typically good candidates for IV sedation dentistry. Those with extremely sensitive teeth and gums may also be eligible for IV sedation dentistry. Some patients with certain disabilities or those who cannot sit still for long periods may also be candidates for IV sedation dentistry. 

Certain underlying conditions or prescription medications you take may make you ineligible for IV sedation dentistry. If that is the case, alternatives, such as nitrous oxide may be considered. 

What Treatments is IV Sedation Dentistry Available for?   

IV Sedation is available for a variety of dental treatments for adults including but not limited to, dental cleanings, root canals, deep cleanings, fillings, and other routine and complex dental treatments. Discuss any fears or concerns you have with your dentist. If IV sedation isn’t right for you, nitrous oxide may be considered. Parents of young children who are afraid of the dentist should discuss potential options for sedation with their dentist.

Sedation Dentistry in Snellville

Fear of going to the dentist should never be an obstacle to receiving excellent dental care. The dentists at Oak Road Dentistry have extensive training including post-graduate residencies focused on sedation dentistry. Contact us today at 770-985-9559 to learn more about sedation dentistry options