Is Sedation Dentistry For Me?
Sedation Dentistry in Shreveport, LA
Do you tense up in fear the moment you think of going to a dentist’s office? This may provide little comfort, but there are thousands or even millions like you. The good news is that with sedation dentistry, most of your dental anxiety can be dealt with so that going for dentist’s appointments no longer feel torturous to you.
Sedation Dentistry Defined
Dr. Kacos, a dentist in Shreveport, LA explains that sedation dentistry refers to the use of medication to help a dental patient to relax while a dental procedure, such as cleaning the teeth or getting a root canal, is being performed. The degree to which you may be sedated varies depending on the degree of your phobia and the dental procedure being performed.
The Levels of Sedation
- Minimal Sedation: Here, you will be awake but relaxed during the dental procedure.
- Moderate Sedation: This type of sedation used to be called conscious sedation. When you are moderately sedated, you may slur your words as you speak and you will not have any recollection of what transpired during the dental procedure that you underwent.
- Deep Sedation: Here, the dentist uses a sedative that leaves you barely conscious, although you can be awakened from that state.
- General Anesthesia: General anesthesia takes sedation to the highest degree and renders you unconscious.
Types of Sedation in Dentistry
- Inhaled Minimal Sedation
Shreveport’s dentist, Dr. Kacos, explains that in this type of sedation, you will inhale a mixture of oxygen and nitrous oxide through a nasal mask. The nitrous oxide, commonly called “laughing gas”, helps you to relax during the dental procedure.
This type of sedation is ideal because your dentist can control in real time how much sedation you receive, and the amount can be adjusted based on the developing situation. The nitrous oxide also wears off quickly.
- Oral Sedation
Oral sedation can vary in intensity from minimal to moderate sedation based on the dose administered. For minimal sedation, Dr. Kacos may give you just one pill to take approximately an hour before your procedure. For moderate sedation, the dentist in Shreveport, LA will give you a larger dose of the oral medication. This bigger dose will cause you to become drowsy. Many people end up falling asleep while their dental procedure is being performed. However, a gentle shake is usually enough to awaken such people.
- IV Moderate Sedation
This type of sedation is administered intravenously (through a vein). This mode of administration makes the drug take effect sooner, unlike the oral sedative that takes about an hour to start working. This method also allows the dentist in Shreveport, LA to keep adjusting your dose until the dental procedure is completed.
- Deep Sedation and General Anesthesia
As already stated, deep sedation leaves you on the edge of consciousness while general anesthesia renders you unconscious. Once the drugs take effect, you will wake up after they run their course (unless given a drug to help wake up).
Will a Local Anesthetic Be Needed Too?
You may be wondering whether it will still be necessary for Dr. Kacos to administer a local anesthetic and yet you are undergoing sedation dentistry. The answer is that the local anesthetic is still necessary to numb any pain that you may feel at the site of the dental procedure. For example, you would be in a lot of pain if the dentist didn’t administer a local anesthetic before performing a root canal treatment.
Is Sedation Dentistry For Me?
We asked our friend, Dr. Fardi Farhat, a dentist in Sterling Heights, MI, about sedation dentistry. Dr. Farhat says, “Not everyone should ask for sedation dentistry because it isn’t necessary for every situation. Individuals with a deep fear of visiting a dentist are the first candidates for sedation dentistry. Those with a low threshold for pain also need sedation for even the most basic of dental procedures”. Dr. Kacos also recommends sedation dentistry for someone who plans on undergoing several dental procedures during one visit, or when that individual has a bad gag reflex.
Precautions Taken Before You Undergo Sedation Dentistry
Sedation dentistry carries some risks which can be managed by Dr. Kacos, your dentist in Shreveport, LA if the appropriate precautions are taken. These include;
- Examining your medical history. Your dentist in Shreveport will analyze your medical history in order to determine whether any factors exist that may rule you out as a candidate for sedation dentistry. For example, you may be taking some medication for other health complications, and those medications may affect the sedative used.
- Keeping you under observation during the dental procedure. Your dentist will also monitor your vital signs throughout the dental procedure.
- Appropriate training. Not every dentist can administer each type of sedation. For example, dentists must undergo additional training before they can be certified to administer deep sedation before a dental procedure.
Don’t let your phobia stop you from getting the needed dental care. Talk to Dr. Ben Kacos about sedation dentistry in Shreveport, LA so that steps can be taken to manage your anxiety while in the dental chair. Be forthright and share any information, such as alerting the doctor that you are pregnant, so that appropriate steps can be taken to avert any dangers that could occur during sedation dentistry.