Conscious sedation is an option to reduce patient anxiety. It can be performed with either oral or IV administration routes.
Frequently asked questions on sedation dentistry:
What is the difference between oral and IV sedation?
Oral sedation uses pills that are swallowed on an empty stomach, IV or (intravenous sedation) drugs are administered directly through the patient’s IV line and results in an immediate response and well controlled sedation.
What kinds of medications are used in conscious sedation?
Benzodiazepines are typically used when oral sedation is performed. With IV sedation, in addition to anxiety reducers, strong pain relievers, anti-inflammatories and other medications can be delivered resulting in an enhanced sedation and quicker recovery.
Who is a good candidate for sedation?
Any patient who is fearful, has had a previous negative experience or difficulty getting numb, gag reflex, undergoing a surgical or lengthy procedure or just doesn’t want to remember their dental appointment are great candidates for sedation.
Will I feel pain during the procedure?
No, local anesthetic still is used under sedation.
Will I be relaxed during my procedure?
Yes, since all patients have different needs and expectations, oral and particularly IV sedation is able to make all patients relaxed able to complete the procedure.
Will I remember the procedure?
Patients typically remember little to nothing of their procedure.
I have difficulty getting numb, how does sedation help?
Sedation lowers the threshold or level of anesthetic necessary to achieve numbing in all patients. Patients who have difficulty getting completely numb are great candidates for sedation.
I have a bad gag reflex, will sedation help?
Yes, since sedation also lowers the gag response, patients who normally cannot have hands in their mouth are able to complete their dental work.
Will I need a driver?
Yes. A driver and arrangements will be needed to ensure safe arrival and departure from the office.
How much does it cost to be sedated at the dentist?
Cost depends on the length of the procedure and is typically a fraction of what a hospital would charge for an anesthesia procedure and most of the time is covered by your insurance plan.