If you feel anxious when visiting the dentist, don't worry, you are not alone. Many patients feel this way and thankfully there are solutions to help you relax. Our Surrey dentists talk about how dental sedation can help you and what you can expect after you've been sedated.
How does sedation help you during your dental appointment?
By receiving sedation prior to any dental procedures you may not only feel more relaxed during your visit but also may experience decreased pain. Some of the procedures that dental sedation may be useful for include teeth cleanings, root canals, and endoscopes. Some patients also deal with a fear of pain as well as a sensitive gag reflex and may find dental sedation helpful in easing these concerns.
The dental sedation options available will depend on the clinic that you visit. Oral sedation is usually administered in liquid or pill form in the time leading up to your dental visit. You may need to take a dose the night before the procedure to alleviate anxiety-related insomnia.
Dental sedation is ideal as it allows you the opportunity to remain conscious. With sedation, you will be relaxed throughout your appointment while still being alert and responsive allowing you to communicate with the dental team throughout your visit.
What are the side effects of dental sedation?
With sedation, you will still be conscious, allowing you to communicate with the dentist but you will be much more relaxed. Some patients feel so comfortable that they actually fall asleep during the treatment. This will only be a light sleep and our dental team won't have any issues gently waking you once the service is complete. The effects of dental sedation vary depending on the person taking it, as they do with many medications. Dental sedation side effects are rare but still possible. Some of the possible side effects of dental sedation include:
- Low blood pressure
- Mild headache
- Sluggish reflexes
- Amnesia (only for the period you are sedated)
- Dry mouth
- Nausea or vomiting
- Watery eyes
Both Oral Sedation & IV Sedation
- Dry mouth
Any side effects that you may experience should pass in a day or two.
Are there any potentially serious complications from dental sedation?
While dental sedation is generally considered a safe method of relaxing patients before a procedure, there are a few things you should know about the potential risks. While rare, these complications are still possible.
When you are scheduled to have dental sedation, your dentist will explain the risks associated with this service.
For those who suffer from obesity or sleep disorders, you will not be a candidate for dental sedation in order to prevent serious complications. Our dental team will offer other methods of helping you feel more relaxed and comfortable during your procedure.
While all medical procedures involve some risk, using IV sedation under the supervision of a trained professional is relatively risk-free. Oversedation is the most serious risk, which will be managed by the dental team through careful monitoring. Patients are not left alone while sedated.
You should always make sure that your dentist is qualified to offer sedation options. This will help minimize the risk of complications.
What can I expect after I've had dental sedation?
The amount of time needed to recover after dental sedation will vary depending on the type of dental sedation that was administered. The dental team will stay with you to help ensure your safety for the entirety of your visit.
Your dentist will inform you if you will require a ride to and from your appointment. We recommend that you take the day off, refrain from operating heavy machinery, and avoid physical activity while the sedative wears off. These side effects should only last up to 24 hours after which you will be able to return to your regular activities.