Dental anxiety is very common and can be severe enough to prevent people from visiting the dentist regularly. Here at Lethbridge Dental, we are very friendly and welcoming and always go out of our way to help people with dental fears and anxieties. While we have several helpful techniques at our disposal, these aren’t always quite enough, which is why we also offer IV sedation dentistry.
With IV sedation dentistry, a sedative is administered intravenously continuously during the visit to ensure you feel more comfortable and relaxed. It is sometimes called sleep dentistry or twilight dentistry because you feel relaxed and often quite drowsy and are no longer anxious or fearful about treatment.
Although you may feel so relaxed that you fall asleep during treatment, we can easily awaken you if needed, for example, if we need to ask you a question or check you are okay. Because the sedative contains an amnesiac, it’s quite common to remember little if anything about your treatment once you complete your visit.
Intravenous sedation can be extremely useful in several situations, including:
IV sedation is ideal for anyone with deep-seated dental fears and phobias and who might not have seen a dentist for a while and needs lengthier treatment to restore dental health. We can complete more dental treatments during a single appointment with intravenous sedation, restoring dental health more quickly and comfortably. Once dental health is improved, routine preventive dental care can gradually become easier to tolerate, especially as our team work hard to build relationships with patients built on mutual trust and respect. IV sedation can also be useful for anyone who would like elective dental treatment, such as cosmetic dentistry, but whose dental fears have prevented them from seeking this treatment.
When someone fears seeing a dentist, it can prevent them from seeking essential and preventive dental care. Small problems that would normally be detected and treated early can develop into larger issues, often causing significant pain and discomfort. Patients with deep-seated dental fears and phobias will often delay seeing a dentist until the discomfort is considerable, requiring longer and more complicated and more expensive treatment. Avoiding essential dental care can cause tooth loss and may negatively impact general health.
Sedation dentistry is very safe, although there is always a small level of risk when giving any form of anaesthetic. We rigorously screen patients before recommending intravenous sedation, reviewing your medical history with you and discussing treatment benefits and possible risks.
The anaesthetic is given by a dental anesthesiologist who can adjust the dosage as needed during treatment to ensure you always feel comfortable. You are monitored continuously during the procedure by our experienced dental team. Once we complete treatment, we keep you with us for a while to check there are no adverse side effects before sending you home to rest. You will need someone with you to bring you to the appointment and take you home and stay with you while you recover.
Suppose you do not feel comfortable with the thought of IV sedation or are unsuitable? In that case, there are other types of sedation alternative solutions/ options. Example – happy gas, penthrox, medications etc.