I have been offering sedation to my patients for over 18 years and have treated thousands of patients for a wide variety of different dental problems. I have been trained by the Society for Advancement of Anesthesia in Dentistry of which I am a full and active member.
Sedation dentistry is often referred to as "sleep dentistry", however whilst sedated you will still be awake but in what many people describe as a relaxed dream-like state. Often you will not remember the treatment if you have IV sedation. There are 3 main types of sedation techniques that I use and I may use one or a combination of the 3.
- Nitrous oxide (laughing gas) – this can help nervous patients relax and is also an effective painkiller.
- Oral sedation – often given in a tablet form (midazolam) approximately 1 hour before treatment and perhaps even the night before to help you relax and get some sleep.
- Intravenous sedation - This is usually administered into the back of the hand and after a few seconds you will go into a state of deep relaxation. You will have the feeling of not really being bothered what is going on. You will experience amnesia during this period and time will seem to pass very quickly. Many patients say that they do not even remember the treatment. You will still be able to respond to questions also communicate with me whilst sedated.
Sedation is a useful option if:
- You do not want to be aware of what is happening during treatment and you want to be "out of it" – IV sedation will work best here.
- You feel that you need help to relax before and during dental treatment
- You are scared of having a specific procedure such as tooth extractions or fillings
- Your fears are irrational and cannot be cured with other means of relaxation
- You suffer from mental health issues and feel that sedation would help during dental treatment
- Your treatment is a long complex procedure involving extractions and replacing missing teeth