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How Dentistry Benefits From Anesthesia

By Abigail Jones

There is one lady who really is a fraidycat. With her ears getting pierced, she shuddered in her chair. She becomes inconsolably afraid when she thinks of the extraction of her two teeth. People’s fears of flying, heights and spiders in the world of phobias rank along with the fear of getting into a dentist chair. According to the American Dental Association, about one hundred and forty five million people avoid getting dental work just because they are scared of it. Dentistry today is truly making huge strides to calm those fears by putting the patient out of his or her misery, in a manner of speaking.

But this lady is just so fortunate as her dentist not only practices general dentistry, but also attained a two year residency in anesthesia administration. Though he is not a mouth surgeon, he is still the sole dentist in the St Louis area licensed to use intravenous anesthesia to make a patient totally unconscious during a dental procedure in his dental clinic. Most states require a dentist to obtain a special permit to administer intravenous medications. These dentists are required to have advanced training in anesthesia and the aptitude to handle emergency situations, and to have emergency gears in their offices too.

Today, local anesthesia which entails a swab that deadens the gum before an injection to numb the area that requires work and blocks the nerve endings has become the most common pain management method within dental offices. Once stepping from the office, you only get discomfited by this feeling of having a fat lip.

Easing patients down can be done with sedatives or anti anxiety agents. Nitrous oxide, which is called laughing gas at times make the patient feel giddy and ecstatic at times when they need to take this in. Patients after taking tranquilizers are into a state of conscious sedation, where they are not in a deep sleep and are fully awake but then they feel rather drowsy and relaxed.

It was revealed by one local dentist who shares that conscious sedation is very safe, as long as the patient is wakeful and verbally reactive especially when you ask him, ‘how you doing, Joe’ and he can still answer back well.

Nitrous oxide can cause some patients to become nauseous if the use is prolonged but such is not the case with an oral tranquilizer. Patients that want to undergo conscious sedation have to be with a companion especially after the treatment. It is a fact that the oral tranquilizer also takes time to work its magic, versus the almost instant effect of an injection. The pill would be administered to the patient in the waiting room, and after a half hour or so, right after the drug takes effect, he is taken back to the dental chair.

We can observe that today, dentistry has become so high tech and most of the jobs are done much faster and easier thanks to an assortment of gadgets as well. I can now bridge the gap between technology and comfort thanks to sedation dentistry. You may not feel any pains back when you were undergoing the dental treatments but then your pocket might feel excruciating pain suddenly as you find that the methods of pain free dentistry you availed will not be covered by your dental plan as it usually would not. The conscious sedation treatment using nitrous oxide might not be covered by the typical dental health plan. Both are patient payable expenses as these are optional.

General anesthesia or unconscious sedation is medically covered most of the time as this is often needed to operate on a person.

One lady states that she was some kind of phobic as well. Gladly, she paid for the nitrous oxide that she needed to have. The course of deep sedation otherwise known as general anesthesia is best for special patients like young kids who cannot hold immobile, people with severe phobias or low pain thresholds, as well as some patients with severe gag reflexes and even who don’t get numb with local anesthesia alone.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Jones, Abigail "How Dentistry Benefits From Anesthesia." How Dentistry Benefits From Anesthesia. 7 Oct. 2010. 6 Aug 2016 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Jones, A (2010, October 7). How Dentistry Benefits From Anesthesia. Retrieved August 6, 2016, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Jones, Abigail "How Dentistry Benefits From Anesthesia"

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