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Sleep Dentistry - A fix for the Dentally Nervous?



Daniel Daniel blog - In case you are someone who doesn't like dental appointments- and i also mean who REALLY doesn't like dental appointments, to begin being highly anxious, phobic or panicked about them- maybe you have wondered whether there exists a way of having your dental treatment done without you needing to be aware of what's going on.

You'll be pleased to know that there are options for people including yourself! Your dental treatment could be carried out in a Dentist's office while you are sedated using Intravenous Sedation in a appointment that is sometimes called "Sleep Dentistry".

It's important for you to realize that "Sleep Dentistry" is really a misnomer- people seldom really fall asleep during a "Sleep Dentistry" appointment. However, most of the people who receive "Sleep Dentistry" have an experience that they will interpret as 'I was asleep for my dental work'. Let's see what that actually means...

"Intravenous Sedation" is a term that describes the task of giving sedative drugs to someone through a vein. A line is set up into the vein, in which a registered practitioner administers the sedative medications. The person rapidly becomes drowsy and relaxed, as well as the dental treatment is done whilst they remain in this heavily sedated state. The sedatives used are strong, and do take a long time to wear off. However, people generally just need to remain under supervision in the dental office for a short period after their appointment. If they are sufficiently recovered to depart the dental office, they actually do so under the supervision associated with an adult family member or friend, who then has to stay with them in your house until the effects of the sedation are completely gone.

This type of sedation is also called 'Conscious Sedation' because the patient remains conscious at all times during the appointment (unlike an overall anaesthetic where they are completely unconscious). Patients will often be so relaxed that they will doze off a little, in case your dentist asks them something they are easily roused and definately will generally answer it.

You may well be wondering how a conscious patient could ever reference intravenous sedation as "Sleep Dentistry"?

The answer lies in one of the unwanted effects of the sedative drugs which might be used: most patients undergoing intravenous sedation are experiencing some level of amnesia. They will often remember arriving at the dentist, they may remember aspects of the trip home, nevertheless they seldom remember many details in any way about the dental treatment itself. As much as they are concerned, these folks were 'asleep' during the entire appointment- hence the description "Sleep Dentistry".

Intravenous Sedation for Dentistry is just not without risks, however, your dentist will always discuss these with you before you make your appointment. Just a well-trained and registered group of professionals can deliver this manner of sedation. It is for this reason that only a couple of Dental Practices ever offer a reverse phone lookup. Your National Dental Association can help you find an appropriately qualified and registered practice in the area.

Of course, intravenous sedation for dentistry won't cure a dental phobia or high dental anxiety. It does, however, provide an choice for people who otherwise might not exactly seek the dental treatment they might need, and knowing that it's available can make patients feel additional relaxed about ongoing dental care.