Sedation Dentistry May Be the Answer To Your Dental Anxiety!
I picked a job where people have a tendency to not like me before they even meet me. Well, I know it’s not ME they don’t like, but what I do. Over the years, our practice has won many fans and converts once we were able to show them how gentle and easy a visit to the dentist can be. This, however, requires getting them in the chair to begin with! Studies have shown that about 30% of the American population avoids the dentist due to fear, so if this applies to you, you are not alone. Some will go for exams and cleanings but aren’t willing to proceed if more involved work is required. Many other people won’t even visit the office unless it is a dire emergency.
For those patients who are truly anxious about their visit, the answer may be sedation dentistry. Sedation allows a patient to have a completely relaxed and comfortable visit and receive the work they need to have a healthy mouth. This is achieved using easy to take medicine given before and during the dental appointment by mouth. The dentist can control how sedated the patient is and increase or decrease their level of sedation as necessary to keep them at ease, relaxed, and safe. We can often achieve much more treatment in one visit than we could if the patient was not sedated.
What patients can be helped by Oral Conscious Sedation (OCS)?
•Patients with anxiety. This, of course, is the most common reason patients request to be sedated. Often, patients who are fearful have put off dental work until there is a severe need for care. Oral conscious sedation allows us to provide care to the patients who often need it most and make their visit comfortable and relaxed. Due to an effect the medicine has, patients normally do not remember the visit at all!
•Patients who suffer from acute or chronic jaw soreness. These patients can
comfortably be treated for several hours. The sedation medication has a muscle relaxation property. By using OCS along with frequent resting time, even these patients can have extensive treatment completed in one visit comfortably and they experience little to no jaw soreness post-operatively.
•Patients who have a gag reflex.Many of these patients may have avoided the
dentist for years due to embarrassment, but with OCS they can have all their work done, sometimes in the same appointment.
•Patients who complain that they can’t get numb. OCS helps the patients who complain that no dentist can get them effectively numb. Many sedation dentists have reliably observed this effect literally hundreds of thousands of times.
•Patients with physical limitations such as back or neck problems.OCS helps
to relax patients who may have chronic back or neck problems. These patients can comfortably sit in the chair for lengthy procedures and experience little or no post-operative back or neck soreness.
How safe is OCS?
There has never been a documented report of a serious adverse incident due to the use of this type of oral sedation in adults, ever, in any office, anywhere in the world! The association I participate in has over one million cases studied. There has not been a single case where a patient had a negative reaction due to the medications severe enough that it could not be treated in the dental office. One reason for our outstanding record is that we constantly monitor patients’ vital signs during treatment and can adjust medications appropriately. All treating doctors are trained to handle advanced emergency situations, but the need just doesn’t arise.
Every patient is different and individual health situations and medications have to be reviewed before sedation can be done. Not everyone is a great candidate. Oral Conscious Sedation opens up availability to a whole group who may not otherwise seek out care, making it easy, relaxing, and comfortable. Combined with gentle hands and a caring spirit, your dental office can make sure your visit is a great experience.