Sleep Dentistry or Sedation Dentistry - Is It Right For You?

11 May, 2018 Sedation Dentistry

Modern dental treatments typically include some plan for minimizing pain to patients. Along with the traditional approach of deadening the gum around the area where the procedure will take place, the use of sedation or sleep dentistry is a possibility. Here are some things you should know about these options, when they are used, and why they could be just what you need.

The Basics of Sleep and Sedation Dentistry

Sedation and sleep dentistry in Markham are designed to lower the level of consciousness that the patient experiences during a dental procedure. Typically, sedation is used when the patient does need to remain awake enough to respond to simple instructions, such as to keep the mouth open. When sedated, the patient may be vaguely aware that something it taking place but not feel any distress or notice the pain.

Sleep dentistry renders the patient unconscious. While there are oral means of administering an agent to bring about sleep, it can also be managed using IV therapy. Patients usually are conscious and then feel themselves drifting off, much like going to sleep. The next thing they know, they are wakening and the procedure is over.

With both sleep and sedation dentistry approaches, the patient remains groggy for a few hours after the procedure is completed. Most dental professionals instruct patients to bring along a friend or relative who can drive the patient to and from the appointment.

When Will the Dental Professional Employ These Options?

Sedation and sleep dentistry is typically used with procedures that require more time and are more invasive.For example, if the removal of a tooth will involve surgery, one of these methods will be used. If there is suspicion of some type of cancer in the mouth, sleep or sedation is used to remove the growth and extract a sample for a biopsy. Should the patient be receiving dental implants, it’s not unusual for the patient to receive what is known as conscious sedation followed by anesthetic injected directly into the gums. The anesthetic is injected after the patient begins to feel the effects of the sedation, ensuring there is no pain.

What Can You Expect During and After the Use of Sleep or Sedation Dentistry?

With either option, the patient is highly unlikely to remember the procedure itself. Pain immediately after the procedure is rare. The more likely scenario is that the discomfort will set in as the anesthetic and the sedation wear off in the hours to come. At that point, most family dentists recommend taking the pain medication prescribed and possible taking an over the counter anti-inflammatory to help with fever, swelling, and soreness. The two medications should be taken at alternate intervals and not at the same time.

Are you about to undergo some type of invasive dental procedure? Talk with your dental professional about the options for sleep or sedation as part of the process. Depending on the nature of the procedure, the use of one or the other may be best for everyone involved.