Dental sedation helps oral surgery patients get through certain procedures easier, but one size does not fit all when it comes to matching the patient with the medication.
It’s important to know what your options are before you undergo any oral surgery procedure, especially if you have specific allergies or medical conditions to consider.
What’s Dental Sedation For?
Dental sedation helps patients relax during many types of oral surgery procedures, or even just a regular trip to the dentist. When you are calm and relaxed, it’s easier for dentists and oral surgeons to perform the work necessary to restore your oral health. Sedation is a way for patients to avoid the stress and anxiety they may associate with an oral procedure.
You can take a pill that acts as a calming sedative. It can be taken the night before or between 30 and 60 minutes before your appointment. However, this option does not provide pain relief, so it is usually used in conjunction with a local anesthetic or some other form of medication.
It’s common to use a local anesthetic, either on its own or combined with other dental sedation options. It is administered to the area where the procedure will take place. It is mainly used for simple oral surgery, such as a tooth extraction. However, it also can be used for more complex procedures such as wisdom tooth removal.
Nitrous oxide, also known as “laughing gas,” is administered through a face mask and inhaled. You do not lose consciousness, but you become fully relaxed. While nitrous oxide can help manage discomfort, it is commonly used along with a local anesthetic to target a specific area.
IV sedation is medication delivered through an intravenous line that renders you unconscious. Since IV sedation can affect vital signs, you are closely monitored and given supplemental oxygen through a breathing mask. This type of sedation is commonly used for wisdom tooth removal.
General anesthesia is typically reserved for more involved oral surgical procedures, such as jaw surgery, facial reconstruction or TMJ correction. This option must be administered by a professional licensed in anesthesiology and usually takes place in either a hospital or surgery center.
If you need to undergo any oral surgery procedure, talk to the team at Northeast Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery to learn more about your dental sedation options, and pinpoint which choice is right for you.