The Different Types of Sedation that Your Dentist May Use

Posted by Dr. Soto Jan 18, 2019

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Many people are terrified of going to the dentist and can’t stomach the idea of having to undergo a dental procedure. Lucky for them, there is a way to get treatment they need while also remaining calm and comfortable in the dental chair: sedation.

Sedation dentistry is very popular. Let’s take a look at what sedation is and what types of sedation are used.

What is Sedation?

Sedation is a medication that relaxes patients while they undergo certain medical or dental procedures. There are different types of sedation available that offer various advantages and disadvantages. A medical or dental professional is qualified to determine which sedation is right for you, depending on the type of procedure being performed and your comfort level.

Types of Sedation

Inhaled Minimal Sedation – This type of sedation involves breathing a gas called nitrous oxide (“laughing gas”) through a mask. Nitrous oxide helps the patient relax while the dentist performs the procedure. The benefit of nitrous oxide is that it wears off pretty quickly and patients can leave the facility on their own without assistance in most cases.

Oral Sedation – Oral sedation is medication taken orally that sedates you. Oral sedation can make you drowsy or can put you to sleep depending on the dosage provided. It is a stronger and longer-lasting method of sedation than nitrous oxide. A common type of oral sedation is Halcion (triazolam).

IV Moderate Sedation – IV moderate sedation is similar to oral sedation but is delivered through an IV directly into a patient’s veins. This method of delivery allows the medication to work faster. It’s an effective sedation for longer procedures because dentists can adjust the level of sedation throughout the procedure.

IV Deep Sedation and General Anesthesia – Deep sedation and general anesthesia are sedatives that put patients to sleep almost completely during the procedure. Unlike oral sedation or IV moderate sedation where patients become very drowsy but are awake, deep sedation causes unconsciousness. The effects of deep sedation last the longest and patients have to wait out the effect of the sedation before they can wake up.

Which One is Right for You?

The type of sedation that is right for you depends on a few factors, including:

Type of Procedure. First, which type of sedation you need will depend on the type of dental procedure you are having done. If you are getting a tooth pulled, you may do well with nitrous oxide alone. The procedure is quick, and the sedative effects wear off pretty quickly. If you are having extensive dental procedure done, you may need deep sedation to ensure you are completely relaxed throughout the procedure.

Comfort Level. Your dentist may recommend a certain type of sedation based on your comfort level with the procedure. For children or patients with high levels of anxiety when it comes to dental procedures, a stronger sedative may be used to ensure the patient is relaxed. Be sure to talk to your dentist about any fears or worries you have ahead of time. A good dentist will ensure you are comfortable and relaxed before proceeding.

If you are interested in getting dental work done by a dentist who is not only highly qualified but also concerned about your comfort during your visits, consider seeing Dr. Ernie Soto in Plantation, Florida.

Dr. Soto is one of only a handful of dentists in Florida who are licensed to provide services like IV sedation to ensure you remain relaxed during your dental procedures. Call (954) 368-6264 today to learn more and to schedule an appointment. You can also request an appointment online.

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