Two of the biggest deterrents to visiting the dentist’s office are fear and anxiety. Individually or in concert, fear and anxiety can cause the skipped dental appointments to steadily stack up and the minor oral health problems to gradually worsen. However, modern dentistry has two solutions, sedation and local anesthesia, to these two common problems. Find out how local anesthesia and sedation dentistry can wash the fear and anxiety away so that you can get the dental care you need.
A fear or an expectation of pain creates a seemingly insurmountable roadblock between a person and the critical dental care they need. Local anesthesia lays that roadblock out flat.
With local anesthesia, often lidocaine or procaine, just about any dental procedure can be undergone relatively free of discomfort. You’ve probably heard the idiom, “like pulling teeth.” But with local anesthesia, having teeth pulled doesn’t feel like pulling teeth.
Beyond pain, many people steer clear of the dentist office due to either a fear of the unknown or a general anxiety disorder. Similar to how local anesthesia counteracts pain, sedation dentistry can neutralize anxiety.
Sedatives are noted for their ability to deliver a sense of calm and wellbeing to patients, the opposite of anxiety. Sedatives are also lauded for their ability to help people sit still longer, and to feel comfortable doing so. Another major benefit of sedatives in a dental setting includes a relaxed gag reflex, meaning people with an overactive gag reflex won’t feel nauseated when dental instruments are inserted into their mouths.
Here’s a look at some of the common ways of delivering sedatives to a dental patient:
IV sedation – an IV line is used to administer a sedative
Laughing gas – nitrous oxide gas is administered through a mask
Oral sedation – a sedative in pill form is taken by mouth
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