At the office of Great Lakes Dental Group, we prioritize your comfort every step of the way, keeping pace with leading-edge technology and methods of care to help you feel most at ease throughout treatment. To help reduce the stress and anxiety that may be associated with a dental visit, or a particular procedure, we offer safe and controlled options in dental sedation.
Sedation dentistry offers patients with general anxiety or fears about a dental procedure the opportunity to have a more comfortable and stress-free experience. By utilizing safe and controlled sedation techniques, the patient is eased into a state of complete relaxation before the procedure. This approach eliminates discomfort, pain, and preoperative anxiety, and typically makes patients feel more at ease post-operatively, as they have little or no memory of the actual moment-to-moment procedure.
Local anesthesia involves an injection directly into or close to the area where a procedure is being performed. While it eliminates any sensation of pain in the targeted area, it does not affect your state of mind or level of anxiety. When a patient receives sedation, additional medications to ease anxiety and promote relaxation are employed in advance of local anesthesia. In this way, both the stress and discomfort associated with a procedure are eliminated. Sedation can be administered in a variety of forms based upon patient needs and the recommendations of the dentist or dental anesthesiologist.
Choosing the most appropriate method of sedation for a procedure depends on a variety of factors such as a patient’s medical history and their level of anxiety. Dental sedation can come in the form of nitrous oxide sedation, oral conscious sedation, and IV sedation. Certain patients receiving comprehensive treatment or undergoing a complex surgical procedure may require general anesthesia in a hospital setting.
Nitrous oxide, or “laughing gas,” is a mild sedative, which is inhaled through a small mask over the nose. A standard in dental sedation for decades, the effects of nitrous oxide are almost immediate and wear off quickly once your procedure is completed.
Oral sedation involves the prescription of an oral medication prior to your appointment. Taken at the recommended time before your visit, oral sedation allows you to feel fully relaxed by the time you’re ready for your procedure. With oral sedation, it’s necessary to plan on having an escort to and from your dentist’s office.
IV Sedation is administered intravenously, or directly into a vein. It is typically indicated when a deeper state of sedation is required. Your dentist will provide you with specific instructions before your visit, and require that you have an escort for the trip home from your appointment.