What Dental Procedures Require Sedation? Here’s What to Expect

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It’s estimated that 15% of Americans are afraid of the dentist. Whether it’s because of a past experience or fear of dental procedures, sedation dentistry has become a popular method to help fearful patients cope with the stress of visiting the dentist.

But dentists will also engage in sedation dentistry for a variety of other reasons. Here are the types of dental procedures and issues that necessitate sedation dentistry and the types of sedation dentistry that are available to you.

Common procedures in sedation dentistry

While any number of Americans can choose to opt for sedation dentistry, there are a few common procedures that recommend a healthy dose of medication. These procedures are typically invasive or painful, thereby demanding an anesthetic or another form of sedation. Here are some of the most common dental issues that necessitate a sedative:

  • Fillings
  • Crowns and crown fillings
  • Implants
  • Root canals
  • Extractions
  • Gum surgeries
  • And more

Each of these procedures require a different level of sedation depending on the extent of the procedure and the comfort of the individual. Talk to your cosmetic dentist about what form of sedation will work best for you.

What forms of sedation dentistry are available?

Sedation is available in varying stages for the comfort of the individual. For example, a dose of anesthesia will knock you out for the entire procedure. However, a minimal sedative will simply relax you as you remain awake throughout the entirety of the process.

Here are some of the primary forms of dental sedation.

  • Laughing gas: Laughing gas is an inhaled mixture of oxygen and nitrous oxide which provides minimal sedation. You are awake during the procedure, but you will feel more relaxed throughout the dental procedure. The effects of laughing gas wear off quickly, making it possible for the patient to drive themselves home following a procedure. This is commonly used for extractions and crowns.
  • An oral sedation: Oral sedatives are typically taken the night before a patient has a dental procedure scheduled. Depending on the dose, the effects may be minimal or moderate. This form of sedation requires a second party to drive the patient and ensure their safety. This type of sedation may make you fall asleep, but you can be easily awakened by your dental care professional with a gentle shake.
  • IV sedation: IV sedation occurs when a sedative is delivered directly to the bloodstream via an IV. This is typically moderate to deep, but the dental professionals are able to change the dose throughout the procedure, giving them total control.
  • Deep sedation: Deep sedation typically occurs through anaesthesia, rendering you completely unconscious during the procedure.

For more information on sedation dentistry, talk to your general dentist today. Whether you need crowns, fillings, a root canal, or more, the dentists at Loudon Dental Associates can put your mind at ease.