Dental Sedation Options If You Can't Be Put Under

If you need dental work performed but you have an underlying medical condition that prevents you from being placed under general anesthesia, you might be wondering what your options are. While most dental procedures—even minor surgery—can be performed with local anesthesia only, like an injection of Novocaine, other methods of tranquilization are also available. Read on to learn what options your dentist might provide to you.

Nitrous Oxide

Nitrous oxide is otherwise known as laughing gas. It's administered with oxygen and provides a sense of calm and tranquility. However, laughing gas typically doesn't put people to sleep. You will be conscious for the procedure, and local anesthesia will still be necessary for procedures that cause pain. However, it will help you to feel more at ease and very relaxed during in-depth procedures, including surgery.

Twilight Sleep

Twilight sleep is a form of IV anesthesia, similar to general anesthesia. It's administered via an IV that will be placed in a vein, usually in your hand or arm. However, as the name implies, it's a lighter form of sedation that doesn't affect you the same way that standard general anesthesia does.

Twilight sleep allows the patient to stay conscious while still being much more at ease and tranquilized. It's a good option if you have a breathing problem that won't let you go under general anesthesia or use nitrous oxide. Unlike nitrous oxide, however, you may not need local anesthesia, as being placed under twilight sleep typically dulls pain tremendously.

Oral Sedatives

The last option you may have available to you is to take an oral sedative prior to having your procedure. These medications are not available over the counter, and may be prescribed by either your doctor or your dentist.

Oral sedatives are typically considered to be very safe and are often suggested for people who have anxiety regarding dental procedures. However, oral sedatives don't offer any pain relief, so you will still need local anesthesia for major dental work.

If you need to see a dentist for something more serious than a simple cleaning, you may need some form of aid in relaxing or for pain relief. These three methods can relax you, help to ease your pain, or both, depending on what you choose. Make sure to explain your full medical history to your dentist so they understand that you need alternative methods of sedation for your dental care. For more information, contact a dental office like Belgrade Dental Associates.