Making Dental Treatment More Comfortable
We recognize that some of our patients may feel anxious or apprehensive about receiving dental care. Dr. Kenner and his team are trained to provide a safe, comfortable, and positive experience through sedation dentistry. For those patients who may be a bit anxious before receiving treatment, this is a great way to help facilitate receiving the treatment they need. Feelings of anxiety, embarrassment, or fear about receiving dental care should never prevent you from having the beautiful, healthy smile that you deserve.
Customized Sedation Dentistry: Safe & Effective
There are two methods of delivery for sedation dentistry, oral and intravenous (IV), depending on the level of sedation needed for a comfortable dental experience. Dr. Kenner will work with each patient to determine which option would be best for them in order to create a personalized treatment plan. This process ensures that every patient will receive they care they need while feeling comfortable and safe.
Oral sedation involves taking a pre-medication by mouth 1 hour before the appointment. This pre-medication is a sedative, so a responsible escort is required to bring the patient to the appointment and take them home. Once at the office, our team will be waiting with a private treatment room where additional medication can be given as needed to establish the right level of sedation before beginning treatment. Once the patient is adequately comfortable and nicely sedated, treatment can begin.
Intravenous sedation (IV sedation) works to achieve a similar or slightly deeper level of sedation with delivery of the medication through an IV access. The benefit of this option is a more rapid on-set of sedation (1 -2 minutes) as compared to oral administration (20-30 minutes). In addition, there is also a more rapid recovery from sedation (1 -2 hours) as compared to the oral medication which can take up to 8 hours to fully wear off. To begin IV sedation, Dr. Kenner will gently place an IV, usually in one of the arms, and then slowly administer medication through that IV access until a proper state of relaxation is established. This level of sedation is easily maintained throughout the treatment process by small additions of medication through the IV access, all with very quick on-set. Once the treatment is complete you will wake up feeling great, albeit drowsy, with little to no recollection of the appointment.
Is Sedation Right for Me?
Whether young or an adult, any patient who experiences dental anxiety is a candidate for sedation dentistry. If you have any of the following fears or concerns, ask us about sedation dentistry as an option for your next dental treatment:
- Have overly sensitive teeth/strong gag reflex/trouble getting numb
- Sensitive to smells or noises in dental offices
- Extreme dental anxiety, or fear of visiting the dentist
- Require a more complex dental treatment
- Wish to have a more comfortable dental treatment
- Have had a traumatic dental experience in the past
- Feel self-conscious about your teeth
- Afraid of needles/shots
We know you may have many questions about sedation dentistry before receiving treatment. Here are some of the most common questions and answers about sedation dentistry.Will I feel anything during my treatment?
Combining the proper level of sedation with local anesthetic, patients do not feel anything. There is very little discomfort, and many patients wake up feeling relaxed and comfortable with almost no memory of the treatment.
Is sedation dentistry the same as being unconscious?
No. Unlike general anesthesia, where a patient is completely unresponsive and unconscious, sedation dentistry maintains a level of consciousness during the sedation experience where you are able to respond to definitive stimuli, however you will not remember responding.
Is sedation dentistry safe?
Sedation dentistry is a safe and effective way for many patients to receive dental treatment. The medications used in the sedation process are tried and true, with little to no adverse side effects, and low allergic potential. They are widely used in the hospital setting to prepare patients before undergoing general anesthesia. Before starting your treatment with any type of sedation, Dr. Kenner will complete an extensive review of your medical history and current health status to ensure you are healthy enough for sedation to further limit any potential complications.
How long will it take the sedation to wear off?
As mentioned above, sedation through oral medications requires the most amount of time not only for on-set, but also recovery. Typically oral medications can take up to 8 hours to fully wear off, and IV administered medications can be as quick as 1 hour. This also depends on the level of sedation needed for comfort during your appointment, with higher total doses of medication requiring more time to wear off. In all instances of sedation, because of the variation in recovery time, we require all sedation patients to have someone drive them to and from their appointment and be available to stay with the patient post-operatively to ensure a safe emergence from sedation.