Sedation Dentistry

If you are among the many people who feel anxious about a visit to your dentist, you’re not alone. In fact, up to 75% of people suffer from some degree of dental phobia, and up to 5% of these people have a debilitating fear which prevents them from taking proper care of even the most basic dental needs, such as check-ups and dental hygiene visits.

We would be thrilled if we could help you get over your fear completely. After all, modern dentistry had advanced to a standard that minimizes any unnecessary pain and discomfort. In the meantime, however, Downtown Nanaimo Dental Group also offers sedation dentistry as a solution to help you manage your dental fears and allow you and your family to get on track and stay on track with the dental treatments you need to enjoy long lasting dental health.

What is Sedation Dentistry?

Dealing with your dental fear requires that you understand what sedation dentistry is, how it works and the benefits it can provide you. The following page is designed to give you the facts and process of sedation dentistry at our dental clinic located in the heart of downtown Nanaimo, BC. You can be assured that our Nanaimo dentists are there to help you manage your dental fears and answer any questions you may have along the way.

Sedation dentistry has helped thousands of people manage their dental phobia and enabled them to take the needed steps to care for their dental health. After reading carefully through the facts and process of sedation dentistry we encourage you to take the next step by booking an appointment to find out if sedation dentistry is a good fit for you.

How are dental sedatives delivered at our Nanaimo dental clinic?

Sedation dentistry involves the use of sedatives to help you attain a relaxed, easy and calm state before and during your dental visit. Sedatives range from mild to moderate in their effect and may be administered by our Nanaimo dentists in one of the following ways:

Oral Sedation Dentistry is a popular method our Nanaimo dentists use to help patients to manage their dental anxiety. Oral sedatives are taken as pills, which our dentists typically prescribe to the patient in the consultation visit leading up to the treatment. Oral sedation patients report feeling relaxed and remembering little of the treatment. For many patients, the experience is described as sleeping through the treatment. In reality however, sedation dental patients actually maintain consciousness and are able to follow instructions throughout the treatment.

Nitrous oxide or “laughing gas” is a mild sedative that is widely requested by patients suffering from dental anxiety. Laughing gas is delivered before and during a dental treatment through a small nose-hood. Patients under the effect of nitrous oxide typically report feelings of general well-being. In addition to nitrous oxide delivered by inhalation, pills can also be used to create a similar effect.

Which Sedation Dentistry approach is best for me?

This will depend based on your specific case. One thing that is important is that you openly communicate any past drug use or current medical conditions you may have. This will be a consideration for our Nanaimo dentists when selecting the appropriate sedation dentistry approach for you. To make sure you don’t forget to mention anything, we advise you to bring a detailed list including any medications and supplements you are taking to the pre-treatment consultation. Please contact Downtown Nanaimo Dental Group, to book an appointment.

How does sedation dentistry benefit me?

A significant benefit of sedation dentistry is that it allows people with dental phobia to start getting the regular dental check-ups and procedures they need. Regular dental visits, such as hygiene appointments and treating cavities early on is critical in the prevention of more complicated dental issues. By following our Nanaimo dentist’s recommended care and maintenance plan, you can avoid the very thing you fear – more visits to the dentist!

Another benefit of sedation dentistry is how sedation patients experience time during a dental appointment. Sedation dentistry patients typically don’t recall much of complex and lengthy dental procedures. As a result, our Nanaimo dentists can schedule several procedures in a single visit that might otherwise have been spaced out over many visits. With more procedures combined into a single appointment, treatments like smile makeovers, the replacement of missing teeth, implants or bridges, root canals and other complex dental treatments are now within reach for patients suffering from dental phobia.

How safe is sedation dentistry?

Sedation dentistry is considered to be a very safe and effective way to resolve fear of dental treatments. There are also several measures that dentists are required to have in place to ensure the safety of sedation dentistry patients. Dentists are required to use monitoring equipment during the procedure, for example, including a pulse oximeter and oxygen equipment. In the very rare case of an adverse reaction to the sedatives, dentists are required to have reversal mediation agents available.

Does the term, “sleep dentistry” mean the same as “sedation dentistry”?

Sedation dentistry and sleep dentistry have sometimes been confused, but they are not the same. During a sedation dentistry procedure you are not actually put asleep, although patients may report feelings of sleepiness. The term sleep dentistry also creates an apparent connection with use of general anesthesia, which doesn’t exist. The use of general anesthesia is not considered sedation dentistry.

The term “sleep dentistry” can also refer to dental apnea appliances, also known as oral appliances, used to treat sleep apnea.  Dental apnea devices to treat sleep apnea are often recommended by a doctor, who refers you to a qualified dental provider, such as Downtown Nanaimo Dental Group, for the appliance application.

Is sedation dentistry covered by insurance?

In most cases insurance carriers do not provide coverage for sedation dentistry procedures. This being the case, however, some sedation procedures may be covered if it allows for multiple procedures to be completed in a single visit. As a general rule, it’s best to check your dental insurance carrier to see if you are eligible for coverage. We are happy to assist you with the process of querying your insurance carrier as well as the necessity of making any needed financial arrangements.

How to prepare for the sedation dentistry appointment.

The number one consideration when having an oral sedation treatment is that you will need to be accompanied by a responsible caregiver who can accompany you to and from the appointment. This is not necessary in the case of nitrous oxide, as the effects of nitrous oxide only last as long as the gas is inhaled. After the oral sedation appointment, it is also strongly recommended that a caregiver should stay with you until the effects of the sedatives have completely worn off.

We’d like to hear from you if you have further questions or concerns about sedation dentistry! At Downtown Nanaimo Dental Group, we are pleased to always offer the opportunity for you to be fully informed and comfortable with your treatment.

We welcome you to contact Downtown Nanaimo Dental Group, to book an appointment today.