Dental Anxiety Is Common—Boger Can Help
Many people experience dental anxiety. In fact, dental fear is the number one reason people avoid the dentist. It’s estimated that as many as 75% of US adults experience some kind of dental fear, from mild to severe.
A person with extreme dental phobia may never see the dentist. Others may force themselves to go, but they’re anxious before and during their visit.
People who fear the dentist often fall into a “cycle of avoidance.” They avoid care until they experience a dental emergency, sometimes requiring invasive treatment that causes an even higher level of anxiety.
This reinforces their fear of dentistry. It doesn’t have to be this way! New treatment options are available for people who experience any level of dental anxiety.
The Boger Approach to Sedation Dentistry
At Boger Dental, we are trained to be sensitive to dental phobias. We understand that dental anxiety usually comes from personal experience.
If you suffer from a dental condition like TMJ disorder, your anxiety may be especially high. That’s why it’s so important to find the right dentist.
We’ll try to help you relax during your visit by discussing your needs in a non-clinical environment before any procedure.
Our friendly staff is also trained to administer the latest options in sedation dentistry, including:
- Inhalation Sedation (Laughing Gas)
- Oral Sedation (Valium, Halcion)
- IV Sedation (Conscious Sedation)
We know how to help you overcome dental anxiety using a combination of behavioral strategies and pharmacological techniques. So put your fears to rest because we’ve got you covered!
Types of Sedation Dentistry
Laughing gas is a common anxiety-reducing used in dentistry. It’s inhaled through a small mask worn on the nose and causes feelings of relaxation and dissociation. Laughing gas has successfully helped many anxious patients relax, and you could be one of them.
Laughing gas is just one option your dentist may offer to help you relax, but it’s not intended to put you to sleep. You’ll still be able to hear and respond to directions, but don’t expect to be fully lucid.
While inhaling laughing gas, you may experience a range of feelings, from heightened relaxation to a full-body euphoria. Everyone will react a bit differently.
We’ll adjust the level of medication, so it’s just right for you, and the effect should wear off quickly. Many patients drive themselves home after procedures where laughing gas is used.
Another common method to reduce fear and anxiety related to visiting the dentist is oral sedation in the form of pills. Anti-anxiety medication such a Valium and Halcion bind with receptors in your brain that cause fear to help you remain calm.
Depending on the type of medication and how much you take, you’ll feel a sense of calm, drowsiness, minor amnesia, and tingling sensations.
While these sedatives may help you feel calmer and sometimes drowsy during dental treatment, you’ll still be conscious and able to communicate with the dental staff. The effects of oral sedation will last for a while, so you’ll need someone to drive you home after your appointment.
Intravenous (IV) sedation is administered directly into your arm or hand. It’s often referred to as “conscious sedation” instead of general anesthesia. With IV sedation, patients breathe on their own while their vitals are monitored and are still responsive to their dentist’s prompts.
Under a general anesthetic, patients are more deeply sedated, need assistance breathing, and are not responsive to verbal or physical prompts.
During IV sedation, a certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA) administers and monitors intravenous anesthesia throughout your procedure. This lets our dental team focus on your treatment while you feel deeply relaxed and comfortable. IV sedation with a CRNA is more predictable than oral sedation.
Just like with oral sedation, you’ll need to have a driver ready to take you home after the procedure. They’ll also need to monitor you, because some effects of the medication may linger for the rest of the day.
Benefits of Sedation Dentistry
The benefits of sedation dentistry include:
- Be totally relaxed during your dental visit.
- Take care of complex procedures in a single visit.
- Catch up on years of putting off dental visits.
- A licensed nurse anesthetist administers the IV sedation.
- Depth of sleep is monitored and tailored to your needs. You’ll awaken alert and ready to go on with your day.
Gentle Dental Care – We Care About Your Comfort!
Our Boger Dental team is trained to be sensitive to dental phobias, and we’ll do all we can to make your experience comfortable, both physically and emotionally.
With the sedation options we offer, you can make it through your dental appointment with little to no anxiety. We want you to rest easy knowing that we always do our best to make sure you’re comfortable.
What to Expect With Sedation Dentistry
If you’re considering sedation, here’s what you can expect before, during, and after your procedure.
If you’re considering sedation dentistry, the first step is scheduling a consultation with your dentist’s office.
They’ll listen to your wants and needs, and look at your medical records to determine if sedation is right for you. You may not be a candidate for dental sedation if you suffer from complications, including the use of certain medications, obstructive sleep apnea, heart complications, or weight conditions.
If you’re a candidate for sedation at our Plymouth office, we’ll help you determine the type of sedation that’s right for you.
When you arrive for your appointment, it’s normal to be a little nervous. At Boger Dental, our team is trained to gently guide you through the process of overcoming dental phobias. We’ll make you comfortable by building your trust before carrying out any procedures.
If you’ve chosen laughing gas, the effects will wear off a few minutes after your procedure. You’ll be able to drive yourself home.
If you’re chosen oral or IV sedation, you’ll wake up in our recovery room. Since oral and IV sedatives take a longer period to wear off, you’ll need someone else to drive you home.
Once you’re home, relax! Your body needs time to recover after oral surgery. Sometimes, you’ll need to eat a soft diet or avoid certain foods for a few weeks. Talk to your dentist if you have questions about your unique situation.
Is Sedation Dentistry Safe?
There are risks with any sedation procedure. An experienced dentist with the proper education, certification, and permits (like our Boger Dental doctors) can minimize these risks. Sedation dentistry is safe, even for children, when it’s done correctly.
Dental sedation is not right for everyone in Plymouth. Certain medications, obstructive sleep apnea, heart conditions, or weight can all increase the risk of complications.
Proper Sedation Procedures
Boger Dental staff will monitor your health and well-being throughout your treatment. You’ll explain what you can expect after your treatment is complete so you can prepare for what to expect after your treatment is complete.
This includes if you’ll need to plan for a ride home, and if you’ll need to make changes to your diet during your recovery.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions about sedation dentistry at Boger Dental. You can ask about the dosage of the sedative being used, the dentist and support staff's training and experience, and any questions you have about what to expect.
Is Dental Sedation Right for You?
To learn more about your dental sedation options at Boger Dental, please request a consultation online. You can also call us at (763) 546-7707 and we'll be happy to help!