If you’re like a majority of people, you’re afraid of the dentist. There are plenty of ghost stories that have roamed through the ages about dentists using torture-like tools that create immense pain during treatment. Let’s make it clear: that’s not the case at Lifetime Smiles. However, we understand that sometimes there’s no way to alleviate those fears. That’s why Lifetime Smiles offers sedation dentistry to Austin’s dentophobes. Dr. A and our staff are pleased to answer any of your questions regarding the different types of sedation dentistry.
Sedation dentistry is any type of pain relief, including laughing gas, anxiety medication, and general anesthesia.
Laughing gas is a slang term for nitrous oxide, a colorless, non-flammable gas that comes in different flavors. It doesn’t irritate patients, and it works quickly. That makes it a great option for simple procedures because it kills the pain and relaxes the mind.
The medication administered to reduce anxiety can be called “happy pills” for a good reason: the meds alleviate any fear or anxiety about visiting the dentist. Most commonly, happy pills are a form of benzodiazepines. Some other benzodiazepines are Valium and Xanax. These pills depress the central nervous system and slow the heartbeat which is why patients relax. It’s important to note that these types of pills can be abused; overdose can result in death. Please speak with us in detail about using anxiety medication during treatment so we can cover all bases of the benefits and effects of using anxiety medication.
The general anesthesiologists at Lifetime Smiles are certified in the proper administration of intravenous general anesthesia. This type of sedation puts the patient to sleep for the entire procedure. IV sedation typically uses midazolam, a drug that renders the patient unconscious. This procedure is great for patients undergoing more serious dental treatments, like removing wisdom teeth.
Stay tuned for our next blog that will talk about the effects of using sedation techniques during dental procedures. As always, you can give us a call or stop by our office to talk more about sedation dentistry offered to our Austin, Texas community.