For many years, there has been a certain stigma surrounding the phobia many people experience when going to the dentist, whether it is the awkward feeling of having someone poke around your mouth and inspect your teeth, or the anticipation of potentially painful procedures such as getting a cavity filled or tooth removed. Sedation dentistry can relieve these anxieties by relaxing patients through the use of sedatives ranging from simple sleeping pills to intravenous injections.
Although sedation dentistry implies unconsciousness, normally the patients do not fall asleep. They are brought to a moderate-to-heavily sedated state where they are somewhat aware of their surroundings and situation, but simply not interested and in a daze-like state. This allows the patient to experience a sleep-like effect, while maintaining the ability to physically respond and hold positions which the dentist adjusts them.
Advantages to Sedation Dentistry
There are many advantages to sedation dentistry. The most obvious one is that it alleviates anxiety associated with the dentist’s office, allowing the patient to maintain a healthy attendance record because they are no longer scared to go. Sedating the patient also allows for unusually long and arduous procedures to be completed in fewer visits, due to the patient being more willing to be worked on for longer periods of time. Patients who have abnormally strong gag reflexes, past traumatic dental experiences, and extremely sensitive teeth may also benefit from sedation dentistry.