Sedation Dentistry at Junction Dental Seattle
What is Sedation Dentistry?
Sedation dentistry is a great option for anxious dental patients and can be used for everything from teeth cleaning, to fillings and extractions. Sedation is used to calm and relax patients prior to and during dental procedures. Dr. Iversen and his team at Junction Dental can help make going to the dentist more comfortable by using sedation dentistry depending on your needs.
- How does it work? Sedation dentistry works by using various medications to depress your central nervous system in order to increase relaxation.
- Benefits: There are several benefits to sedation dentistry. Often dentists are able to complete more work in fewer visits than without sedation. Calming your anxiety also reduces blood pressure which is important when administering other anesthetics. Some types of sedation can also produce an amnesiac effect, so unpleasant memories are easily forgotten. Overall, the use of sedation can allow anxious patients to tolerate routine dental care and receive the benefits of regular visits.
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Types of sedation we use
We use minimal-conscious sedation
This is the lightest level of sedation and involves breathing nitrous oxide through a nose mask. It is combined with oxygen and your dentist is able to control how much sedation you get very quickly. Usually, NO driver is needed to accompany an adult patient to and from their appointment.
This involves taking a medication one hour prior to your dental work. Typically, a class of medications called benzodiazepines are used, particularly triazolam (Halcion), which has a relatively short window of action on your system so that it will usually start wearing off soon after your appointment is over. This class of sedatives will usually provide some amnesia for patients to help forget unpleasant procedures. Because this medication will make you drowsy, you will need a driver to escort you to and from your appointment.
Good candidates for oral sedation
There are several reasons why it might be a good idea to have sedation, particularly oral sedation. Because it acts quickly and also wears off quickly, it is a good choice for a wide range of reasons. Good candidates for oral sedation generally include patients that:
- Have a low pain threshold
- Are anxious or fearful
- Have trouble sitting still
- Have a bad or strong gag reflex
Can any dentist perform sedation dentistry?
Yes and no. Most general dentists are able to use minimal conscious sedation with nitrous oxide and/or oral sedation. However, a dentist who offers moderate and deeper levels of unconscious sedation must have proper specialized training and resources available to manage such appointments.
Is sedation dentistry safe?
While there are always risks with anesthesia, sedation dentistry is generally safe and low risk when performed by a dentist with proper training and experience. Dr. Iversen will review your medical history, as well explain the low risks involved with minimal conscious sedation.
If you are anxious about going to the dentist or have children who are, contact us at Junction Dental. Schedule an appointment today with Dr. Iversen and his staff who will help put your anxiety to rest.