Sedation dentistry has become an increasingly popular option for dental work, especially for highly anxious or phobic patients, or for patients who need to have a large amount of dental work done. The following are answers to some of the more common questions we receive in our offices about sedation dentistry.
Will I be unconscious during sedation dentistry?
No. You will be aware of what's going on around you, and you'll be able to respond to questions and requests from Dr. Huefner. The sedation technique merely leaves you extremely relaxed and stress-free, in a "floaty" or dream-like state that makes time pass quickly and keeps you from building anxiety about your dental work. Some patients compare a session with sedation dentistry to a refreshing nap.
What are the benefits of sedation dentistry?
If you have any anxiety or fear about having dental work done, sedation dentistry will take it away completely. When you're relaxed, Dr. Huefner will be able to work more efficiently and quickly, so not only will your session seem shorter, it probably will be shorter.
How is sedation dentistry administered?
We generally utilize two medications, either by themselves or combined together. For milder sedation, nitrous oxide gas is used. For most, and especially those requesting moderate to strong sedation, orally administered medications are utilized, and they are often in combination with short or intermittent use of nitrous oxide.
Are there side effects?
Use of nitrous oxide for sedation dentistry produces few, if any, side effects. It will take only a few minutes for the effects to wear off after your work is complete, but afterwards you'll feel perfectly normal. However, if you opt for a moderate or stronger sedative, which is administered orally, it will take a bit longer to leave your system, and you’ll likely experience drowsiness and reduced response time. After the tranquilizer has worn off, you'll feel normal again. Our experience is that these medications used with this very safe technique, that there is very little incidence of any side effects.
Can I drive myself home after sedation dentistry?
If Dr. Huefner uses nitrous oxide, you should be able to drive yourself home. If you took an oral sedative medication for your dentistry, you will have to have someone else drive you home as a precautionary measure, as they take a bit of time to wear off and can cause lack of coordination and slow your reflexes, making it unsafe to drive.
I need to have a lot of dental work done. Can sedation dentistry help?
Sedation dentistry can be a great help if you need to have several dental procedures done. Because you will be very relaxed and have no anxiety, Dr. Huefner will be able to work more quickly and efficiently. Multiple procedures can go much more smoothly and efficiently under these conditions. If you've neglected your dental care due to fear of the dentist, sedation dentistry can help you get caught up with work you've neglected.
If you want to find out more about what Dr. Norman Huefner can offer you in terms of sedation dentistry, please contact our Orange County, California cosmetic dentistry offices. We'll be happy to answer your questions and schedule an appointment to get you back on the road to dental health – stress and anxiety free.