Take the edge off with sedation dentistry

Some people have such severe dental anxiety that they avoid dentists at all costs. Staying out of the dentist’s chair can have serious consequences, though. People with dental fears may have less attractive smiles, and they’re compromising their oral health as well.

Fortunately, the best dentists in Southlake prioritize patient comfort in an attempt to put anxious patients at ease. Sedation dentistry can help even the most skittish patients feel more comfortable during dental visits.

best dentists in SouthlakeIn practicing sedation dentistry, dentists use medications, most often from a class of anti-anxiety drugs known as benzodiazepines, to help patients achieve a state of deep relaxation. As an added bonus, the sedatives have an amnestic effect, leaving the patient with no memory of the procedure—and no possibility of negative flashbacks that could dissuade them from seeking care in the future.

Although sedation dentistry is often called “sleep” dentistry, that’s a misnomer. Patients remain conscious throughout the appointment. Because patients are still able to respond to dentists’ requests and their airways are not compromised, sedation is a safer alternative than general anesthesia, which truly puts patients to sleep.

When you choose sedation dentistry, you have a number of options. The sedatives can be delivered intravenously or in pill form (for those who are squeamish about needles, too) or patients can inhale nitrous oxide to achieve that same relaxation effect.

Each method has different advantages, so discuss your choices with your dentist to determine which one is best for you.

Sedation dentistry can be appropriate for a variety of dental procedures, ranging from routine cleanings to complex surgeries.

Local anesthetics are used in combination with sedation dentistry to reduce patient discomfort. While the sedative helps to relax patients, local anesthetics minimize pain at the procedure site.

Maintaining your oral health is an important component of your overall wellness. This is why it’s essential to keep regular dental appointments. Don’t let fear keep you out of the dental office. Ask your dentist about sedation dentistry instead.