At Port Hope Dental we understand that many people experience fear and anxiety when they visit the dentist. If you or someone you know is anxious about a dental procedure or the sounds, smells and environment associated with the dental visit, they may be a candidate for sedation dentistry. This fear can prevent many people from going to the dentist and keeping them from getting the treatment they need.
To assist you in relaxing during your dental appointments, we may recommend oral sedation or nitrous oxide. Each has a long history of success. Before your treatment, we will discuss your needs and expectations as well as the experiences that have led to your feelings of anxiety. Our goal is to get to know you so that we can support you to the best of our ability. In many cases, we have found that simply talking with the dentist about fears sets a patient at ease.
Nitrous Oxide Sedation
Nitrous oxide, also known as "laughing gas", is a sedative agent that is mixed with oxygen and inhaled from a mask over the nose. You are not asleep, just relaxed and unconcerned about dental treatment. The gas takes effect quickly, and is often enough to calm a patient who is nervous about getting a numbing injection to start treatment. Nitrous oxide wears off almost immediately after the flow of gas is stopped, and has no residual wooziness, so you may drive or return to work or other activities right away.
Oral sedation involves the use of oral medications in the form of a pill to relieve mild to moderate anxiety. This produces a high level of drowsiness, but not a complete sleep. You are conscious throughout treatment, breathing on your own, able to respond to conversation, and can use the restroom if you'd like. The grogginess this causes mean you should arrange for someone to drive you to and from our office. Oral conscious sedation can be a good choice for the patient who is quite anxious, or needs extensive treatment. A patient with little or no dental anxiety may benefit from oral conscious sedation if he or she wants to have multiple procedures taken care of at one appointment. Because it allows both your body and mind to relax, the doctor is able to work more efficiently, and you are less likely to experience jaw stiffness or other post-procedure discomfort.
Our treatments follow strict safety protocols that include a thorough evaluation to help us determine the most appropriate form of sedation for each individual. Using the most appropriate method for your needs, we will make sure that you are calm and relaxed during your dental treatments.
Sedation dentistry can change the way you feel about seeing the dentist. Contact our Port Hope Dental office today for your consultation.