Sedation dentistry provides safe, comfortable dental treatment for patients with special needs. Sometimes called relaxation dentistry, sedation dentistry is a method of managing pain and anxiety during professional dental care through the use of medication.
You can benefit from sedation dentistry if you experience one or more of the following:
- High fear of dental care
- Complex dental problems
- Traumatic dental experiences
- Fear of needles and shots
- Trouble getting numb
- Sensitive teeth
The two types of sedation dentistry utilized in this practice are:
- Inhalation Sedation - Nitrous Oxide (or Laughing Gas)
- IV Sedation
Inhalation sedation uses Nitrous Oxide and Oxygen (laughing gas) to help your body achieve a relaxed state without falling asleep. This is a very popular form of sedation used in dentistry today. Dr Pacella may recommend Nitrous Oxide sedation for children who may feel mildly anxious about dental treatment or for those who have a strong gag reflex.
How does Nitrous Oxide work?
Nitrous Oxide is a combination of two common gases - nitrogen and oxygen and has a sweet smell. A mask is then placed over your nose and while you breathe normally the gases mix in your lungs, allowing you to relax. Some people who receive Nitrous Oxide feel tingly arms and legs and a feeling of giddiness. This is normal and will wear off after breating regular oxygen for a few minutes. There are no lasting effects to using Nitrous Oxide and it is safe to use.
Who should not use Nitrous Oxide?
Anyone who has severe anxiety, nasal congestion or a medical condition that would interfere with sedation should not use Nitrous Oxide. Also, if there is discomfort in wearing the mask, we do not recommend using Nitrous Oxide. Dr. Pacella will review your child's medical history to recommend what kind of sedation method is right for your child.
For some children, Nitrous Oxide may not be enough. Children with a high level of anxiety, young children and children with special needs may need IV sedation to complete dental treatment. IV sedation is similiar to the sedation used when a wisdom tooth is removed and is administered by an anesthesiologist who monitors the childs progress throughout treatment. It is important to give us your child's complete medical history and inform us of any changes to medications your child may be taking. We will give you written instructions at the time IV sedation is recommended. These instructions must be followed in order to ensure your child's safety during their sedation.
Please talk with Dr Pacella to see if IV sedation may be recommended for your child's dental treatment needs.