Sedation Dentistry in California, MD 20619
While most patients have a comfortable experience in our practice using only local anesthetic, for others even thinking about dental visits is stressful or traumatic.
With that in mind we’ve done everything we can to make your visit to our office as comfortable as possible. Beyond our many patient amenities, an additional offering we feature for very anxious patients (and sometimes just for long appointments) is oral sedation.
Oral sedation California, MD 20619 involves taking a short course of medication (which is started either the night before or an hour before the appointment) that allows you to relax and in a sense “zone out” for your visit. Some patients who are typically fearful end up even falling asleep while we work and we gently wake them when we are through.
If this sounds like an option you’d like, please mention it when you schedule your next appointment. We will work with you (and your primary care physician, if necessary) to ensure that you have the safest, most comfortable experience possible!
Ways to Relieve Anxiety
Oral Sedation California, MD 20619 — Oral sedation (given by mouth) is a popular option for many people precisely because it does not require the use of needles. Oral sedatives are either swallowed whole in pill form or can be dissolved under the tongue. Both methods work in a matter of minutes. A variety of oral sedative and anxiolytic (anxiety-dissolving) medications have been developed through extensive research and testing to make your experience of dental treatment as comfortable and relaxing as possible. All have long safety records after decades of use, and several even have “amnesic” properties, meaning you will remember little to nothing, even though you are conscious throughout the treatment. Commonly prescribed medications include Valium®, Halcion®, Sonata®, Ativan®, Vistaril®, and Versed®. To learn more, view our chart on Types of Oral Sedatives
Inhalation Conscious Sedation — Nitrous oxide, a sedative you inhale, has been used in dental offices for nearly 100 years. It is a relatively poor pain reliever but a very good anti-anxiety medication. It is administered through a nasal hood, which resembles a small cup that is placed over your nose. The oxygen mixed with nitrous oxide provides a light-headed or even euphoric feeling, which is quick to wear off so there is no “hangover” effect. All bodily functions remain essentially normal during the use of this sedative, which is very safe.
IV Conscious Sedation California, MD 20619 — Sedatives delivered directly into the bloodstream intravenously (into the vein) are more potent than when taken orally, and the amnesic effects may be more profound. Because IV sedation has an almost immediate effect on the body and its functions — including heart rate, blood pressure and breathing — there is a higher degree of risk associated with it than with other types of sedatives. There is also a higher level of training required for those who administer it. As with all sedation (except nitrous oxide), you must be monitored with specialized equipment throughout your IV sedation treatment. The main advantage is that drugs administered this way work immediately and the level of sedation can be adjusted more quickly and easily. And with most sedatives, you won’t remember a thing about your dental procedure after the sedative wears off.
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