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Sleep Dentistry, IV Sedation Dentistry, Conscious Sedation Dentistry – Is There A Difference?

By Stephen Daniels

Finding the right dentist can be hard to do, especially if you have moved recently, or your dentist has recently retired. If you are one of multi-millions of people who also has a dental phobia, finding the right office to care for your teeth can become even more overwhelming.

The good news is that most dentists are becoming increasingly sensitive to the needs and fears of patients. The ultimate goal of both patient and doctor is pain-free service, which can be accomplished in several ways. Sedation dentistry is now offered by dental offices everywhere as a technique that allays the fears and anxieties of even the most phobic individual. There are many options available, so anyone nervous about a trip to the dentist can select the most appropriate method for their specific situation.

One of the most popular treatments is conscious sedation dentistry. This method allows the patient to be in a heightened state of relaxation without being completely unconscious. There are several ways conscious sedation is accomplished. Oral sedation is the least intrusive and often the most appealing; because there is no injection involved, those who have needle anxiety may choose this option. Tranquilizers or anti-anxiety medications are taken by mouth the day of surgery or the night before. These medications provide such a relaxing experience that many people don’t even remember the procedure. Oral sedatives do not offer relief from pain, so local anesthetic injections are still needed.

For those who have high anxiety, nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, can be administered. This form of anti-anxiety medication is inhaled and allows the patient to stay responsive but calm. But some people experience nausea with the use of nitrous oxide, so IV sedation dentistry may be used instead. This method works more quickly than oral sedatives, as the medication is processed directly into the bloodstream. It can also easily be adjusted through the IV if the patient is not sedated enough. But as with oral sedatives, pain relief requires a local anesthetic in addition to the anti-anxiety medication. Depending on the needs of the patient, deep sedation may be required.

Sleep dentistry is when a general anesthetic is administered, causing the patient to go into an unconscious state. This method is generally reserved for longer or more serious procedures. The individual will be unresponsive and unaware of the process; what might take hours to complete will only feel like minutes. This is an appealing concept to the extremely nervous patient. However, someone receiving a general anesthetic will not be able to drive immediately after the procedure, so transportation arrangements need to be made prior to the operation.

The varying forms of sedation dentistry help people get past pre-existing fears. Those with anxiety will be able to attain healthy smiles without having to worry needlessly.

Reproduction permitted only when all active hyperlinks are included. 2010 All Rights Reserved.

Stephen Daniels is an acclaimed NetBiz SEO 2.0 researcher. If you are looking for sedation dentistry in Portland, Oregon, he highly recommends West Hills Dental Center. Specializing in conscious sedation techniques, their experienced dentists offer a range of anxiety-free treatments for the whole family.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Daniels, Stephen "Sleep Dentistry, IV Sedation Dentistry, Conscious Sedation Dentistry – Is There A Difference?." Sleep Dentistry, IV Sedation Dentistry, Conscious Sedation Dentistry – Is There A Difference?. 24 Jun. 2010. 3 Sep 2014 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Daniels, S (2010, June 24). Sleep Dentistry, IV Sedation Dentistry, Conscious Sedation Dentistry – Is There A Difference?. Retrieved September 3, 2014, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Daniels, Stephen "Sleep Dentistry, IV Sedation Dentistry, Conscious Sedation Dentistry – Is There A Difference?"

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