Even though I’m at my dental office every day and I love coming to work, I am aware that plenty of people would rather avoid spending time at the dentist. That’s why we work hard at West Market Dental to make your visits as calm and comfortable as possible. We do this by providing soothing surroundings, televisions for distraction and top-notch hygienists and assistants who are dedicated to your care.
But regardless of the effort we put in to easing your worries about visiting the dentist, some people can still experience high levels of anxiety when having to get their teeth checked or worked on. This may not have anything to do with a negative previous experience at the dentist at all. Some people find the sights and smells of a dentist’s office to be intimidating, some find having to keep their mouth open extremely difficult. Some experience panic when there are tools in their mouth, and others suffer from an overactive gag reflex. Still others may have back or neck issues that make sitting in a dentist’s chair unbearable.
Whatever the reason, we don’t want you to avoid the dentist because of something that we can help with. Sedation dentistry is a safe and effective way to manage dental anxiety, and can be used for procedures ranging from a cleaning to dental surgery.
Don’t allow a fear of the dentist to prevent you from getting the treatment you need. Talk to us about where your concerns are coming from and we can discuss the best approach for you. West Market Dental provides sedation dentistry services in Calgary’s southwest.
What is Sedation Dentistry?
Sedation dentistry refers to the use of medication to help our clients relax during their dental procedures. Sedation dentistry is not sleep dentistry. You will never be unconscious or unresponsive during your treatment. We only use sedation techniques that allow you to be aware and awake, but that will also leave you feeling relaxed and comfortable. Sounds and smells are dulled, which assists with easing anxiety, and certain types of sedation dentistry also minimize pain.
Additional benefits to sedation dentistry include speed of treatment, as we are able to perform procedures with no distractions. This also means we can carry out longer procedures more easily. Sedation dentistry is also a good option for those with back and neck issues that prevent them from sitting comfortably for long periods of time.
Sedation dentistry is not recommended for those who are pregnant, who have severe respiratory problems or asthma, or who have obstructive sleep apnea.
Different Types of Sedation Dentistry
The two types of sedation offered at West Market Dental are oral conscious sedation and inhalation sedation. Be aware that dentists in the province of Alberta are not permitted to administer general anesthesia (deep sedation) to perform dental surgery.
Inhalation Conscious Sedation: Inhalation conscious sedation has been used for many years by dentists. It involves the use of nitrous oxide and oxygen (better known as “laughing gas”), and works best for those with mild to moderate anxiety. It is also the ideal method of sedation for children. It works fast, is very flexible, and provides us with absolute control over your level of sedation. Recovery is quick, there are very few side effects and patients are able to return to their daily activities right away.
We will use a local anesthetic for proper pain control as well.
Some disadvantages to inhalation conscious sedation are that it is not recommended for those with respiratory problems (asthma and emphysema), and claustrophobic patients may find the apparatus to be confining. The apparatus can also make it difficult to perform longer procedures on upper front teeth.
Oral Conscious Sedation: Oral conscious sedation involves the use of a group of pharmaceuticals known as benzodiazepines. This type of sedation works well for most people with higher levels of anxiety. You will be given a small, easy-to-swallow pill, and be able to feel the effects within ten minutes. Patients under oral conscious sedation are easy to monitor throughout the procedure, and patients generally remember little to nothing about their appointment. This type is sedation is also at a lower cost for patients.
Some drawbacks to oral conscious sedation are that the level of sedation is not easily manipulated once the drug has been administered, and there is no analgesic or pain relief effect. We will, of course, provide freezing to ensure you are as comfortable as possible. Also note that you will not be able to drive yourself to your appointment. You will need to have someone take you to and from our office if you are undergoing oral conscious sedation.
West Market Dental are Calgary Family Dentists Serving the Southwest of Calgary