4 Ways a Sedation Dentist Can Help You

by | Jun 5, 2019 | Uncategorized

With a reputable sedation dentist, a trip to the dental chair does not have to be a harrowing experience. In the past, dentists relied on local anesthesia inside the mouth or inhaled laughing gas to complete uncomfortable procedures. Now, sedation dentistry has evolved to provide a variety of options to benefit both the patient and the dentist.

Types of sedation dentistry

Local anesthesia involves placing a numbing drug directly onto the affected area of the mouth through an ointment or injection. However, sedation dentistry places a patient at a certain level of unconsciousness, making them unaware of their surroundings. The sedation can be given to a patient through inhaled gases like nitrous oxide (also known as laughing gas), sedative pills or injections directly into the bloodstream.

Benefits of choosing a sedation dentist

While local anesthesia can be effective for simple procedures, it can be time-sensitive and not effective for more complex, time-consuming procedures like root canals. When efficiency and patient comfort are a factor, a sedation dentist may choose additional anesthesia.

Decreases a patient's anxiety

Anxiety and fear can be an important determining factor when it comes to patients receiving oral care. Anxiety can have many causes, including past traumatic appointments, teeth sensitivity and reactions to local anesthesia. By using sedation as part of a dental procedure, a patient can be comforted in knowing they will be unaware of what is occurring to them and will wake only after the procedure is done. This lack of memory, also called anterograde amnesia, can reduce fear of follow-up procedures and future dental work.

Decreases a patient's gag reflex

A gag reflex is the body’s natural response to things becoming lodged in the back of the mouth, but during a dental appointment, anxiety can make this reflex more prominent. The increased gag reflex can cause extra discomfort for the patient and make it more difficult for a dentist to complete procedures. With sedation, the gag reflex disappears, allowing better access for fillings, x-rays or dental impressions.

Decreases a patient's pain

Sedation dentistry removes pain and discomfort during dental procedures, and it also can reduce pain once a patient is awake. By choosing the proper drugs, a dentist can ensure that a patient continues to have pain relief when fully conscious.

Decreases a patient's appointment time

With sedation, a dentist can help a nervous patient sit still for extended periods of time. This allows the dentist to perform complicated procedures at one time instead of over multiple visits. By decreasing the number of overall visits, a patient not only experiences a decrease in anxiety but a decrease in dental bills as well.


For the anxious patient, finding a sedation dentist can be a game-changer. The American Dental Association recommends routine cleanings twice a year, but when damage or disease occurs, the thought of painful checkups can keep people away. By having the option of sedation dentistry, patients can feel more comfortable while receiving the care they need.

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