Sedation Dentistry FAQs
What is sedation dentistry?
Sedation dentistry uses sedatives to calm anxiety, reduce discomfort, and control side effects during dental treatment.
Who is a candidate for sedation dentistry?
Most people with dental anxiety or discomfort are good candidates for sedation dentistry. However, age, obesity, and preexisting conditions may cause risks. We’ll ask you about your health, and if we have any concerns may ask you to get clearance from your doctor before sedation.
Is sedation dentistry safe?
Yes. Sedation dentistry is safe for good candidates, especially if you work with a DOCS-certified dentist.
What types of sedation are available?
At Advanced Dentistry of Butler, we offer three types of sedation:
- Oral conscious sedation
- Nitrous oxide
- IV sedation
For more information, see the detailed descriptions on this page.
How long does the sedative effect last?
The duration of sedative effects depends on the type of sedation. With nitrous oxide, the effects wear off quickly: within 5 minutes for most people. With oral conscious sedation and IV sedation, the effects may last for an hour or more after your dental procedure.
Will I be unconscious during sedation?
Generally not. Sedation dentistry makes you relaxed, but you will likely still be awake. However, some people are so relaxed that they doze off during treatment. Because sedatives may have an amnesia effect, you may think you fell asleep, even if you were awake the entire time.
How do I choose a dentist for sedation dentistry?
If you are looking for a sedation dentist, choose one that has all three E’s:
You want to choose a dentist with training in the safe and effective use of sedation. DOCS certification is a good measure to use for this.
You also want a dentist who has administered dental sedation many times. They’ve reaffirmed the key points of their training through repeated practice.
Finally, you want a dentist who makes you feel completely comfortable. You should trust them and feel that they have empathy for your situation.
Sedation dentistry is most commonly used for what procedures?
With sedation dentistry, the issue is more the patient than the procedure. Anxious dental patients will likely use sedation for almost every procedure, while many people never need sedation.
However, patients are more likely to ask for sedation for:
- Dental implants
- Complex restorative and cosmetic dentistry