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Sedation Dentistry Options: What Are the Differences?

Many women and men experience anxiety about visiting the dentist. Dental phobia is a common condition, and it often prevents individuals from obtaining necessary oral care. Additionally, when patients avoid treatments due to anxiety, their dental issues can worsen and eventually develop into more complicated and costly problems.

To combat dental phobia, Dr. Deborah Klotz and Dr. Robert Schlossberg offer a range of sedation dentistry options at our practice to help every patient feel at ease in the dentist’s chair while receiving the oral care they need and/or desire. Depending upon your unique needs and the procedure being performed, Dr. Deb or Dr. Rob can choose one of three sedation techniques: nitrous oxide, oral conscious sedation, or intravenous sedation.

Nitrous oxide, often called “laughing gas,” is breathed through a small nosepiece and can keep you relaxed for the duration of the procedure. The effects of nitrous oxide wear off quickly, and you are generally able to drive yourself home afterward. Oral conscious sedation can help you reach a complete state of relaxation using a medicated powder placed beneath the tongue. During treatment, you will still be able to communicate with the dentist, though you will likely feel groggy after treatment and require a ride home. For patients with severe dental phobia, intravenous (IV) sedation can completely relax the body and mind, allowing a peaceful sleep during treatment. Afterward, you will likely have little to no memory of the procedure, and our doctors recommend arranging a friend or family member to drive you home and stay with you until the effects of the sedation wear off entirely.

During the consultation process, Dr. Rob or Dr. Deb will help you decide which method of sedation most appropriately suits your treatment needs and level of anxiety. For more information about the benefits of sedation dentistry, or to find out which technique can best help you receive the dental care you need, please schedule an appointment with one of our experienced sedation dentists by contacting our practice online or by telephone today.