It is normal to feel nervous about upcoming dental work, and dentists are trained to help you feel comfortable in the dental chair. They maintain open communication throughout the entire process, and they can recommend medication to remain calm during a procedure.
This specialized medicine is known as sedation, and there are several types that can enhance your dental experience. Dr. Nishan Halim, a dentist in Washington, DC, describes three sedation dentistry treatments that can help you relax during your dental procedure.
Nitrous oxide, commonly referred to as laughing gas, is a type of dental sedation medication that keeps patients calm during dental work. The medicine is breathed by patients through a mask over the nose that is worn throughout the procedure.
The patient will remain conscious and aware of their surroundings with nitrous oxide, though they will notice a calming sensation from the medicine. These effects will fade once the mask is removed at the end of the procedure.
Oral sedation is provided for a patient prior to their dental appointment. The patient takes the tablet approximately one hour before their procedure. This medication will keep a patient conscious, but they will have little awareness or memory of the dental work.
For this reason, the patient should arrange for someone to give them a lift to and from their dentist appointment. The patient may feel disoriented for a few hours after their procedure until the sedation wears off.
IV sedation refers to relaxing medication delivered to a patient intravenously during their dental procedure. The patient will be awake and conscious with this type of medication but will feel relaxed and comfortable.
The effects begin to wear off once the medication is no longer administered through the IV. This treatment differs from general anesthesia, which puts a patient to sleep during invasive procedures, such as oral surgery. You can discuss your comfort level with these treatment options as well as your desired awareness level for your procedure with your dentist during a consultation appointment.
Sedation Dentistry Available in Washington, DC
Dr. Halim offers sedation dentistry and other general dental services to patients in Washington, DC. Our practice also specializes in cosmetic and restorative dentistry, including tooth replacement solutions. To schedule an appointment with us, contact our team online or reach our office by phone at 202.318.4113.