Sedation dentistry is referred to as the use of pharmacological agents that are geared towards calming and relaxing the patient prior to and during a dental appointment. There are usually varying degrees of dental sedation. They include;
With this, patients are able to respond normally to verbal commands if and when someone talks to them. Even though cognitive function and coordination may be impaired, breathing is usually unaffected.
In regards to this, patients only respond purposefully to verbal commands either alone or by light stimulation. No intervention, such as the use of machines is required to maintain breathing since the patient is able to do this on their own. Moderate sedation is also referred to as Conscious Sedation.
In deep sedation, patients cannot be easily aroused but they do respond to painful stimulation. Their ability to breathe on their own may be impaired which is why the use of interventions is necessary. This is required so as to maintain the patient’s airway.
With general anesthesia, the patient cannot be aroused at all even by painful stimulation. The patient is also not able to breathe independently, which is why assistance is often required in maintaining a patent airway.
There are a number of dentistry techniques that are usually administered to patients who visit a dentist. They include;
- General Anesthetics
- Intravenous Sedation
- Nitrous Oxide N20 (Happy Gas)
General anesthesia is usually administered as an inhaled gas or an injected liquid and this is because there are several drugs and gases that can either be combined or used alone to produce general anesthesia. With this, constant monitoring is required and this all depends on the type of dental surgery that has been undertaken. When the patient is under general anesthesia, the following is usually monitored;
- Respiratory rate
- Blood pressure
- Heart rhythm
- Heart rate
- Oxygen saturation
With all these procedures local anesthesia is also administered. A small area is numbed by injecting a local anesthetic under the skin where the minor operation is going to be performed. One of the commonly used local anesthetics is Lignocaine, which can be administered as an injection or placed topically on mucous membranes. With dental sedation, a number of advantages are associated with it such as;
- There will be no pain
- Longer procedures, lesser appointments
- Vehicle of treatment for fearful patients
For you to have a more agreeable dental experience, consider sedation dentistry and you will be glad that you did!