IV Sedation

IV Sedation

IV sedation is a technique used by specially trained dentists to keep patients comfortably sedated through an entire appointment. Unlike general anesthesia, which also is delivered intravenously, IV sedation is a form of conscious sedation where the patient is never completely asleep.

 

What is IV Sedation?

IV sedation is a form of conscious sedation where your dentist uses an IV line in your arm or hand to administer the sedative drugs. 

What is Conscious Sedation?

Conscious sedation is modern dentistry that lets even the most high fear patient have a relaxing and comfortable dental visit. Since the patient is comfortable, your sedation dentist is able to accomplish the work of several appointments in just one. There are a number of conscious sedation techniques, but they all have certain things in common. While the goal of general anesthesia is for the patient to sleep, in dentistry it is much more common to use conscious sedation, where the patient is sedated and comfortable, yet still awake. When your dentist uses conscious sedation, you don’t really fall asleep, even though sometimes it feels like you did. That’s because sedation feels so relaxing and peaceful that the patient doesn’t even notice the passing of time. Many of the medications used in conscious sedation have an amnesiac effect as well, leaving patients with little or no memory of their dental appointment, and further adding to the feeling that the patient was asleep.

Is IV Sedation for me?

IV sedation is wonderful and incredibly effective for most healthy adults.  For many, it is the answer they have been looking for all their life.  Discuss sedation with your dentist if any of the following sound like you:

  • You are uncomfortable in a dentists’ office
  • You are too scared to even call the dentist and make an appointment
  • You can’t stand the smell and sounds of a dentist office
  • You are delaying treatment you know you need
  • You are in pain when you eat, but too anxious  about the dentist to take care of it
  • You are unable to find a dentist that you feel you can trust
  • You have trouble getting numb – the anesthetic doesn’t seem to work on you
  • You are afraid to smile
  • You are concerned about how many dental appointments you know you’ll need
  • You are looking for a way to have the work of several appointments done in just one or two
  • You remember bad experiences with a dentist in your past
  • You need your wisdom teeth removed
  • You have sensitive teeth
  • You have a strong gag reflex, especially when the dentist is working in your mouth
  • You have trouble with jaw soreness when you have to keep your mouth open
  • You have back or neck pain when you sit in a dental chair
  • You have sensitive teeth

What can I expect from IV Sedation?

There are many different medications and sedation techniques, so it is best to get specifics from your sedation dentist. Since you will be receiving sedative medication, you will need a companion to drive you to the appointment. Your dentist will begin by monitoring your vital signs, including heart rate and blood pressure, to make sure that you stay completely safe through the procedure. If you are concerned about getting a needle, your dentist has techniques to make you comfortable before the IV is started. The dentistry will all be performed while you are relaxed and totally comfortable. When it is safe for you to travel, your companion will take you home, and then you will rest comfortably for the rest of the day.

Is IV Sedation Safe?

IV sedation is very safe as well as effective. Your dentist has received advanced training specifically designed to increase the safety and effectiveness of the sedation, and has been certified and licensed by the state. Your vital signs will be constantly monitored from the moment you arrive at the office through the appointment, and until your dentist is certain you are ready to leave. In fact, your dentist and the whole dental team are highly trained in safety and emergency procedures, making the dentist office one of the safest places you can be!

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