May 15, 2019
As you look through the calendar on your phone, you realize there’s something scheduled for next week. Not remembering what it could be, you click on it and a feeling of dread comes over you. It’s your upcoming dentist appointment. If this scenario sounds familiar, there’s good news. Sedation dentistry in Kernersville can help to alleviate the fear and anxiety. How? Using nitrous oxide, you’ll begin to feel completely comfortable and at ease during your appointment. Find out more about this particular type of sedation and what you can expect the next time you visit your dentist.
What is Sedation Dentistry?
If you need to relax during your next dental appointment, there’s a good chance your sedation dentist in Kernersville offers sedation dentistry. With the help of medication, you can feel completely at ease while at the dentist office. From general cleanings to more complex procedures, sedation dentistry can help anyone, no matter the age.
How is Nitrous Oxide Used?
While some dentists might use oral sedation or IV sedation, most offer nitrous oxide. Also known as “laughing gas,” this is considered the preferred method of sedation. Why? It’s mild, and it is effective at managing pain and anxiety in patients, especially when combined with local anesthesia.
What Can I Expect?
Once you begin to breathe through the mask that fits over your nose, the gas that is mixed with oxygen is pushed through and will begin to work quickly. In a matter of minutes, you might begin to feel light or as if you’re floating. Tingling in the hands and feet is normal as well.
If your procedure calls for anesthesia, you won’t feel anxious about the needle because of the comfort provided by the sedation. Keep in mind, with nitrous oxide, you won’t be asleep. Instead, you’ll be able to converse and answer any questions prompted by your dental team. You’ll be completely aware but totally at ease. Rest assured, no part of your cleaning or procedure will begin until your dentist believes you are fully at ease.
After your procedure is complete, the sedation begins to wear off in five minutes. You can quickly resume normal activity, including driving yourself home from the dentist office.
What Are the Benefits of It?
If feeling at ease and comfortable during your dental visit isn’t enough, here are some of the other benefits associated with nitrous oxide:
- There are no needles involved: IV sedation requires medication to be administered through an IV that is placed in your arm, hand or another part of your body. Nitrous oxide is inhaled, so if you’re afraid of needles, this is the perfect sedation method for you.
- It’s quick: The gas that flows through the mask quickly reaches your brain and causes you to relax more quickly than other types of sedation.
- Easily adjusted: If your dentist believes you might be receiving too much nitrous oxide, she can adjust the levels during the procedure. This also helps to prevent and reduce the risk of overdose.
- It leaves the body quickly: Not only does it take effect quickly, but once the gas is turned off and the mask is removed, you’ll begin to feel the nitrous oxide wear off, which means you can resume normal activity once finished.
- Available to anyone: Very seldom is someone ineligible for nitrous oxide sedation. It is available to most individuals, even those who have diabetes or cardiovascular disease. However, if you are pregnant, have COPD or another pulmonary disease, nitrous oxide might not be the best option for you.
If dental anxiety has kept you from receiving the level of care you need, don’t wait any longer. Talk to your dentist about sedation dentistry and how nitrous oxide can help you.
About the Author
Dr. Veronica Walker, DDS, completed her undergraduate studies at Duke University before going on to earn a master’s degree in entomology from North Carolina State University. Once completing her master’s, she attended the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Dentistry where she earned her Doctor of Dental Surgery degree in 1984. Dr. Walker understands going to the dentist can be a scary thing for some people, which is why she offers sedation dentistry. Keeping her patients comfortable and at ease is important, so if you’re ready to face your fear and have a wonderful experience in our dental office, contact us via our website or call (336) 993-3727.
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