A Service You Should Know About
Did you know that at Dr. Ku’s office we offer sedation dentistry? As practitioners and patients ourselves, we understand that going to the dentist can cause anxiety. Up to 40 million Americans admit NOT going to the dentist solely due to that hurdle.
Unfortunately, the real fear is that by skipping your bi-annual appointment, you are actually setting yourself up for more expensive and extensive dental work in the future. As though that didn’t add insult to injury!
For some patients, the fear stems from appointments when they were children, or from a single traumatic visit. For others, it is a generalized anxiety that makes visiting the dentist untenable.
Through the practice of sedation dentistry, Dr. Ku is able to remove anxiety completely from the picture and leave you confident and secure about future visits. To ensure everyone feels comfortable in our office—no matter the level of anxiety—Dr. Ku finds sedation dentistry an important component of his practice.
What is sedation dentistry?
To those with dental anxiety, sedition dentistry can sound almost as frightening as the dental work itself. Are you completely out of it while under the anesthesia? Can you talk? Will you feel pain? Nausea?
The good news is that our patients regularly rave about this service. Even our most nervous patients leave feeling confident and even proud of their accomplishment—and even better about their clean teeth!
There are several types of sedition dentistry, however they all work with the brain and nervous system to reduce fear and anxiety—while many times blocking out any memories of the event. Those patients who do remember the appointment report feeling a sense of deep relaxation throughout. The most common forms of sedation used are:
- Inhaled minimum sedation: If you’re looking just to “take the edge off,” this nitrous oxide (popularly known as laughing gas) concoction will do the trick. Patients report feeling relaxed throughout every procedure. Since this sedation wears off quickly, patients are able to drive themselves home after the appointment, too.
- Oral sedation: Depending on the dosage, oral sedation can range from minimal to moderate. Oral sedation is administered through a pill—typically one found in the same family as Valium. Patients will take the pill about an hour before their procedures. While patients may feel drowsy, they generally remain awake throughout the appointment. However, if you would like to take a quick nap after taking oral sedation, that’s fine with us! The higher the dose, the more likely the patient is to fall asleep. Dosage will be discussed with your dentist prior to your appointment.
- IV moderate sedation: IV sedation is administered through the veins and can be controlled by the dentist throughout the procedure. Patients who receive IV sedation are normally visiting the office for more complex procedures that take more time than your typical cleaning. Since this is the most invasive sedation, it is extra important to discuss your full medical history with your dentist.
What are the benefits?
In order to combat tooth decay and gum disease, or identify even larger issues such as oral cancers, patients must be willing to come to the office and sit in the chair. If fear is what is stopping them, then it’s important to eliminate or otherwise subdue that fear.
Sedation dentistry allows for us to do that. We believe that working with each of our patients and meeting them “where are they are mentally” allows us to form a long-lasting bond that builds an essential trust.
In addition to relieving fears, sedation dentistry also allows us to complete several procedures in one visit. This minimizes the number of times patients have to come in and allows us to provide the best care possible. If you have anxiety or fears about visiting the dentist, then call us today. We would be happy to walk you through what our office can offer.
Also published on Medium.