Going to the dentist can be anxiety-inducing for some people. For others, when extensive or invasive procedures are required, the pain can be intense.
In these cases, dental IV sedation may be the best option, protecting patients from the discomfort and pain that can come with certain procedures and easing the anxiety of those who might otherwise avoid getting the dental care they need.
What Is Dental IV Sedation?
IV sedation at the dentist is much like IV sedation that occurs in any medical setting. In order to ensure that the patient is sleepy during a dental procedure, an IV is introduced that will deliver a sedative to the patient.
Unlike other settings, IV sedation may not render the patient unconscious. Instead, they may feel sleepy or at peace and unable to feel the pain or the anxiety that may otherwise accompany the procedure.
Is Dental IV Sedation Appropriate for Kids & People With Special Needs?
Some pediatric dentists will require that children who undergo extreme dental procedures undergo IV sedation with parental permission. It is appropriate since it does not put the child “under” but just helps them to keep still and not be scared of the procedure.
Similarly, it is not uncommon for people with special needs to require IV sedation for even basic dental exams. Because some may not understand or have the ability to stay quiet and still while in the dentist’s chair, IV sedation is the only way for a dentist and hygienist to be able to do the work required to keep their teeth healthy.
How Does IV Sedation at the Dentist Work?
In general, IV sedation at the dentist may begin with the application of numbing cream at the site where the needle will be inserted but not always. If numbing cream is used, after it takes effect, the needle will be inserted and the drip that includes the sedative will begin.
In some cases, this needle may stay in place for the duration of the procedure. In other cases, it may be inserted and then removed.
After the procedure is complete or when the person has had enough sedative to last for the remainder of the procedure, the needle is removed and a bandage or cotton ball and tape may be applied.
It is advisable for patients undergoing dental IV sedation to bring someone with them who can drive them home and be available to the dentist for aftercare instructions. Though the patient will be awake, they may feel groggy and unable to stay focused on what the dentist is saying about taking care of themselves in the days following the procedure.
Do I Need IV Sedation?
Contact Dison Family Dentistry today to set up a consultation, determine what dental procedures are needed, and assess what type of sedation or pain management is recommended for your personal needs.