Visiting the dentist is often considered a low priority unless you are experiencing a dental problem and can no longer cope with the symptoms that it is causing you. However, for a moderate percentage of patients, avoiding visiting their dentist has become a way of life regardless of whether or not their oral health is suffering. For these patients, their fear of the dentist is what is stopping them from receiving vital preventative oral care, as well as the treatment they need when they need it most.
The tools and techniques used in modern dentistry have continued to evolve rapidly. In the past, sedation was something that was strictly associated with medical procedures, and in particular, surgeries. However, today is it commonly being utilized in dentistry, enabling patients who would normally be unable to tolerate a dental appointment to receive the dental care that they both need and deserve.
Alongside our complete commitment to quality dental care, at Cossich Family Dentistry, your experience is our priority. From laughing gas to oral sedation and beyond, our experienced dentistry team can ensure that you receive the right type of sedation to enable you to remain calm and comfortable during your dental appointment.
Sedation dentistry is most often thought of as being for a patient who has a phobia of visiting the dentist or undergoing certain types of dental procedure. You may be able to manage to sit through a regular check-up, but the prospect of a cavity filling, root canal or more may be too much to bear. Sedation dentistry is definitely a valuable tool that can enable even the most frightened and anxious patient to tolerate anything from an examination to invasive treatment.
However, sedation can also be an important tool for another demographic of patient – those who have disabilities who would otherwise be unable to manage a dental appointment. Disabilities take a variety of forms, with some being physical and others being cognitive. These can prevent patients from understanding instructions and following instructions and can heighten their fear of the dentist. There are a wide range of different patients that could benefit from sedation, including but not limited to those suffering from:
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
Sensory Processing Disorder
Severe learning disabilities
If you think that your loved one would benefit from sedation dentistry, don’t hesitate to inquire with our experienced dental team.
Sedation takes a variety of different forms depending on the extent of the need for sedation and the type of procedure you or your loved one is undergoing. It usually falls into three different depths, as follows:
Usually administered through a mask placed over the nose, this provides just enough sedation for patients to feel calm and relaxed while still maintaining awareness. Since it wears off within a few seconds, you will wear the mask continuously for the length of your appointment. There is no recovery time and you will be able to drive yourself home as soon as your procedure is complete.
Oral sedation involves taking a pill or capsule around an hour before your procedure. This provides a greater depth of sedation than laughing gas, and in addition to feeling very relaxed, you may also feel confused and have little awareness of what is happening around you. It can take a few hours for the effects of oral sedation to fully wear off, and you will need someone to drive you home after.
The deepest level of sedation is administered intravenously and will render you virtually unconscious. You won’t have any awareness of your procedure, nor remember anything about it when you come around after. The effects of IV sedation can potentially last up to 24 hours afterward, so you will need someone to drive you home and ideally stay with you until you feel completely back to normal.
If you live in Covington or the nearby communities of Mandeville, Folsom, Abita Springs, Madisonville, and Slidell and are interested in discovering more about sedation dentistry, we would be delighted to talk you through the process and determine if you are a suitable candidate for this liberating and valuable dental tool. Please contact us today by visiting our family dentistry offices in Covington, LA or calling us on 985-412-3293.