Sedation allows dentists to create a state of calmness and relaxation for their patients, thus minimalizing any fear, discomfort, or pain the patient might otherwise experience. There are several different types of sedation dentistry.
Local Anesthesia is administered by injecting medication into the tissue or by applying topical medication to numb the area and eliminate sensation.
Minimal Sedation typically involves an oral medication that makes the patient more relaxed. All bodily functions remain normal, and the patient can still breathe on their own. The individual can still respond to verbal instruction, but may experience some degree of amnesia afterwards and not remember what happened. Nitrous oxide (often referred to as laughing gas) falls under the category of minimal sedation. In most cases, minimal sedation in combination with some local anesthesia is sufficient.
Moderate Sedation is achieved by use of oral medications or an IV. The patient remains awake (though they may experience more sleepiness) and can respond to touch and verbal instruction. The patient is able to breathe on their own without supplemental oxygen, and all bodily functions remain normal.
Deep Sedation can be achieved through injecting medication, administering oral medication, administering gasses, or a combination of the three. Patients with deep sedation are less able to respond to touch and verbal instruction, and may need assistance breathing. A patient would more likely have deep sedation at an oral surgeon than at a dentist office, but some dentists are trained and certified to offer deep sedation to their patients.
To learn about the types of sedation offered at our office, give us a phone call at (208)722-6400.