In dentistry, oral sedation gets its name from the fact that it is delivered in the form of a small pill (oral), and you remain comfortable and calm (sedation) throughout the dental procedure.
When is Oral Sedation Needed in Dentistry
Is there anyone who really likes going to the dentist? One study found that most of us (58.8%) actually experience dental anxiety when visiting the dentist. And many people start feeling anxiety even before the visit. And, while you might think that maybe children might be more affected. The studies found that “dental fear and anxiety were not affected by age.”
Some people (estimates range up to 10% of us) suffer “dental phobia”, or an acute fear surrounding dental visits.
The anxiety and fear that people experience can not only make them uncomfortable about seeing the dentist. It can affect the maintenance of their dental health in many ways.
They can avoid making appointments often enough, or ever
When they visit, they can only tolerate a limited amount of treatment, resulting in needing many visits to do what could otherwise be done in a single visit
They will tolerate day-to-day dental soreness and pain, which is usually a sign that they need treatment, to avoid going to the dentist.
The fear people feel isn’t always based purely on the dental work or dental office. Many people don’t like needles, or they don’t respond well to the localized numbing that’s normally used. Others have strong gag reflexes, sensitive teeth or other issues that make them more sensitive to pain or uncomfortable in the dental chair.
How Oral Sedation Helps
Oral sedation is very safe and works well for patients who don’t like or respond well to the localized numbing delivered by needle, and/or who find that nitrous oxide doesn’t work for them.
Patients receive a prescription for a small pill that is to be taken about an hour before a dental visit.
You will need to find someone to drive you to and from the dental office. By the time of the dental visit, you will be relaxed and comfortable. Once in the dental suite, the dentist will make sure you are safe and remain comfortable. You’ll be conscious throughout the procedure, but you’ll feel no pain and be relaxed and calm the entire time.
To learn more about oral sedation and if it is right for you, contact us at My Dental Care here in Lindsay, Ontario.