Dental Sedation | Plainville CT | Gentle Dental Care

Which Kind of Dental Sedation Is Right for You?

  • October 5, 2018

Many dental practices offer one or maybe two kinds of dental sedation. We know everyone has different levels of anxiety and different needs for their procedures. So we offer three kinds of sedation dentistry at Gentle Dental Care: inhaled sedation (“laughing gas”), oral sedation, and IV sedation.

Before your procedure, Dr. Thomas Peltzer will meet with you to help you determine which one will work best for you. Among the factors you’ll consider:

  • Your medical history
  • Your past experiences with sedation
  • Your level of anxiety
  • Your overall health
  • Length of your procedure(s)

In the meantime we’ve provided information here on the different kinds of dental sedation, so you can begin thinking about it before your consultation with Dr. Peltzer. If you have any questions, call our Plainville, CT dentist office at 860-479-2397.

You’ll Feel Lightly Relaxed With Laughing Gas

We often suggest inhaled sedation, also called laughing gas, for minor dental procedures. It’s a harmless gas mixed with oxygen. You receive it through a small mask you wear over your nose. It gives most people a lightheaded or euphoric sensation.  

The pros:

  • It’s so safe even very young children can receive it.
  • It’s very fast-acting and wears off quickly too.
  • We can adjust the amount you receive during your procedure.
  • You’ll be able to hear us clearly and respond to us if needed.
  • You’ll feel like yourself almost immediately. You’ll even be able to drive yourself home if you’d like.

Laughing gas is only effective for mild cases of dental anxiety. If you’ve got a higher level of anxiety, we’ll recommend oral sedation or IV sedation.

Oral Sedation Has an Amnesia Effect

One option for higher levels of anxiety is an oral sedative. We’ll provide you with a safe prescription medication. It doesn’t take effect as quickly as laughing gas – but you can take it at home prior to your appointment so you arrive at our office already relaxed. While you’ll remain conscious and able to respond to us, it delivers a deeper level of relaxation than laughing gas.

The pros:

  • Since you take it just like you would any other pill, it gives you more control over the process.
  • It’s the least invasive method of dental sedation. You don’t have to wear a mask on your face, and no needle is required.
  • Many people remember little, if anything, about their procedure after it’s over.

One of the biggest downsides to oral sedation is how differently it affects people. Because of this, we can’t control your level of relaxation the way we can with the other two kinds of dental sedation. You’ll remain groggy for several hours after your procedure, so you’ll need to arrange for a ride home afterward.

Undergo Multiple Procedures in a Single Visit With IV Sedation

IV sedation is administered intravenously. Because it goes right into your bloodstream, it takes effect almost immediately. It puts you into a deeply relaxed, almost sleeplike state. In addition, we can easily increase or decrease the amount you receive. It’s the best choice for more extreme levels of anxiety. We also recommend it if you’re undergoing a lengthy procedure, or if you’d like to get several procedures done in a single appointment.

Similar to oral sedation, you’ll be deeply relaxed but still responsive. You won’t remember much about your appointment, and you’ll want to have someone else drive you home.

No matter which kind of dental sedation you receive, you’re in good hands with our team. We monitor your pulse, blood pressure, temperature, breathing, and other vitals during your treatment. For more information, call 860-479-2397.


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