Sedation dentistry is simply a form of dentistry that is done by the administration of certain sedatives through an oral or intravenous route to calm patients who fear a dental procedure. This form of dentistry has existed for several decades, and it has gained popularity as the age of high incidences of dental phobia has become more widespread.
In general, there are a couple of different kinds of sedation that can be administered to patients who are undergoing dental procedures. The most common type of sedative used is benzodiazepines or tranquilizers and the other type is muscle relaxants. Sedative dentists typically recommend that their patients use these forms of medications while undergoing treatments. It is important to note that sedation and anesthesia can both have serious consequences if not administered properly.
Sedative dentistry can take several forms, but in general they involve an oral route that is used to provide the patient with the necessary amount of sedative to complete the dental treatment. This process can take several hours depending on the severity of the condition, and the type of treatment that needs to be done. A sedative dentist will need to discuss each patient’s individual case with them and determine which course of treatment is best for them. For example, a patient may be sedated through general anesthesia or the sedatives could be given through intramuscular (IM) injections, which are used to also administer sedatives. Intramuscular sedatives are considered a safer way to administer the medications.
Some sedatives that are used in dentistry come as a pill that is taken orally, or it can come as a numbing spray. The most commonly used of these are the benzodiazepines, and they are most often administered through the nose or mouth. When patients require more of an extended amount of sedatives, they are usually administered through the intravenous route and in this case, the doctor will insert a needle into the vein for a faster amount of sedative being delivered to the patient.
While sedatives are commonly used in dentistry, they are also commonly prescribed for patients suffering from post-surgery pain, and those who have had surgery. Some patients may only require a mild sedative and others may need a stronger medication such as morphine or narcotics for chronic pain that cannot be treated using sedatives alone.
There are a few side effects of sedation dentistry that should be noted before being given this form of dental treatment. Because sedatives can cause drowsiness, it is important for patients who are to be given sedatives, to not drive while they are still feeling the effects of the medication. Sedatives can cause some people to become drowsy, and may even result in individuals falling completely asleep.