Have you been avoiding dental care due to a fear of dentists? If so, you are not alone. Dental phobia is extraordinarily common. An estimated 9% to 15% of Americans, or as many as 40 million people, never visit a dentist due to fear and anxiety, while another 20% only see the dentist when it is absolutely unavoidable. Fortunately, sedation dentistry can help you cope with those fears while receiving the dental care you need. Sedation dentistry is often referred to as ‘anxiety free’ dentistry, and for good reason. Sedation dentistry involves using nitrous oxide or various medications to help the patient relax and experience as pain-free and anxiety-free dental treatment session as possible. The most common types of sedation dentistry are inhalation sedation, oral sedation, intravenous (IV) sedation, and intramuscular sedation. Let’s take a brief look at each one:
Inhalation sedation is the most traditional form of dental sedation. In this form of sedation, the patient breathes in a mixture of oxygen and nitrous oxide (commonly referred to as ‘laughing gas’) through a nasal mask. This gas mixture leaves the patient feeling relaxed, euphoric and pain-free.
Oral sedation is the easiest form of sedation. In this form of sedation, the patient simply swallows a sedative in pill form before the appointment. Oral sedation leaves the patient calm, relaxed and anxiety-free.
Intravenous sedation or IV drip sedation is generally used to control moderate to severe pain. In this form of sedation, sedative drugs and analgesics are fed directly into a vein in the patient’s arm. IV sedation has the advantage of being easily monitored and adjusted by the administrating dentist to provide varying levels of sedation and pain relief as needed. The patient ‘wakes up’ refreshed and with no memory of the procedure. Because of this, it is rapidly becoming one of the most common forms of sedation dentistry and has seen growing popularity with both patients and dentist. At Texas Dental, we specialize in intravenous sedation. IV sedation will allow you to get the treatment you need while experiencing none of the fear or anxiety you have had with previous dental appointments. Dr. Miranda and her team will give you the excellent care that you deserve in a relaxing, stress-free environment that will help you conquer your fear of the dentist. Contact us today to see what our team can do for you.