Is Sedation Dentistry Safe?

Sedation dentistry can help people access their most-needed dental services even in cases where they may feel too anxious to sit calmly through the procedure, and lengthier treatments that require them to lie still for a long time.

There are different types of sedation available, from the common laughing gas to oral conscious sedation, and even IV sedation. This topic is often confusing for most patients, with the number 1 question most commonly asked being:

Is it safe?

Though sedation is often necessary, the perceived risks and side effects can make people uncomfortable. Below, let’s look closer at sedation dentistry, and determine how safe it truly is.

Oral Sedation Is Safe When Chosen Properly

The choice in oral sedation is never made on a whim. Your dentist will review your case and medical history when recommending a particular sedative, to ensure you do not experience any unwanted reactions throughout your treatment.

For instance, if you suffer from certain health conditions, you might not be a good candidate for a sedative such as oral conscious or IV sedation. The dentist might then recommend nitrous oxide (laughing gas) which is a much milder sedative instead or even revise your treatment plan to accommodate your specific case.

What Are the Side Effects of Sedation?

While there is the risk of side effects for any procedures, the risk of severe or long-term side effects with sedation dentistry is extremely rare. This is because the patient’s case is closely analyzed before administering the sedative, to ensure they are getting the right one for their specific medical profile.

There are some short-term side effects that many patients experience, such as:

  • Drowsiness
  • Nausea
  • Minor headaches
  • Dry mouth

These effects will wear off completely once the sedative is out of your system, which usually takes about a day. If you need to be sedated for a dental procedure, the dentist will ask you to bring a friend or family member to drive you home afterward.

Do I Need Sedation?

Sedation can be recommended in the following cases:

Of course, not all patients need sedation. If you are generally comfortable at the dentist and don’t need an extensive procedure, you may just require local anesthesia to numb the mouth and minimize pain during your appointment.

How The Art of Dentistry Can Help

At The Art of Dentistry, we always recommend what’s best for the patient, and take the time to educate them about all the procedures they are about to go through. If you need a procedure that could require sedation, Dr. Kory Kirkegaard will answer all your questions and help you make an informed decision for your dental health.

To get started, please book your first appointment with Dr. Kirkegaard online, or reach out to us directly by calling (913) 274-9200.

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