Sedation Dentistry | North Raleigh NC
Do you experience high levels of anxiety when visiting the dentist? You may be a candidate for conscious sedation, a reduction in anxiety via laughing gas, anti-anxiety pills, or a combination of both, where the patient is able to respond to commands, breathe on their own, and remain in control of all bodily functions.
When scheduling appointments, please let us know if you are interested in using any of these sedation options for your dental procedures. Advantages to patients include:
- Treatment is completed when you are in a more relaxed mood.
- You will have less difficulty sitting through a lengthy procedure.
- Multiple treatments and full mouth restorations can occur during the same visit.
Nitrous Oxide (laughing gas)
Nitrous Oxide is a sweet-smelling, non-irritating, colorless gas that is used to calm anxious dental patients. The patient may experience mild amnesia and may fall asleep, not remembering all of what happened during their appointment.
There are many advantages to using Nitrous Oxide:
- The depth of sedation can be altered at any time to increase or decrease sedation.
- There is no after effect such as a “hangover”.
- Inhalation sedation is safe with no side effects on your heart and lungs, etc.
- Inhalation sedation is very effective in minimizing gagging.
- In as little as 2-3 minutes, its relaxation and pain killing properties develop.
You should not utilize Nitrous Oxide if you have been diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Though there are no other major contraindications to using Nitrous Oxide, you may not want to use it if you have emphysema, exotic chest problems, M.S., a cold or other difficulties with breathing. Additionally, Nitrous Oxide is not advised if you are pregnant or think you may be pregnant.
The most commonly prescribed dental related drugs that treat anxiety belong to the “benzodiazepine” family, drugs such as Valium, Halcion or Ativan. These drugs decrease anxiety by binding and toning down activity within “fear” receptors in the brain.
Some of these drugs can affect your liver and heart. It’s important to check with your practitioner and/or pharmacist. You should be sure to inform your doctor or dentist if any of the following apply: known allergy to the drug, narrow-angle glaucoma, pregnancy, severe respiratory disease (COPD), congestive heart failure (CHF), impaired kidney or liver function, depression/bipolar disorder/psychoses, chronic bronchitis and some other conditions. It’s also important to let us know if you are taking other medications. There could be possible drug interactions.
Please note that you shouldn’t travel on your own after you’ve taken any of these drugs. Make sure you have an escort, even if you traveled by bus or foot! It’s easy to become disorientated.
We will require you to sign a consent form prior to treatment with oral sedation. The form can be retrieved from our office, or downloaded and printed from the link below.