Written by Charlotte Wood (last updated March 25, 2009)
Many people's fear of dentistry is maybe one of their greatest fears, and seriously, I can't blame them! Going to the dentist isn't usually a pleasant experience—ever. Who actually enjoys the gritty toothpaste, the poky instruments in your mouth, the suction tube that takes out all your spit so the dental hygienist can poke around more in your mouth. And that's just the stuff involved with cleaning. If you have need a cavity filling or a root canal or anything in that vein of dental work, you can add drills and Novocain to that list of really pleasant (note the sarcasm) dental experiences. You can also throw in uncomfortable x-ray session into your occasional dentist visit. So, after that recounting that probably did not dredge up particularly pleasing memories; however, the title of this article may pique your interest: Sedation Dentistry. Doesn't that sound great? If you can go through your dental experiences while sedated, then maybe your dentist visits won't be so bad!
Sedation dentistry is basically what it sounds like: sedation. It's not your typical medical sedation, however; sedation dentistry involves simply relaxing you enough so you're not freaked out, and you're not entirely aware of everything that's going on. Sedation dentistry makes you comfortable, and when you're comfortable, you don't really know what's going on; therefore, the sedation dentist can do more to your teeth than he or she would be able to do in a regular dentist visit. Typical dentist visits can usually only encompass a cleaning, a cavity filling, a teeth whitening, a root canal. Sedation dentistry, however, allows for several procedures to be done in a single appointment. You can have months—or even years—of dental work done in a few simple appointments.
You may be worried about the safety of sedation dentistry, and to be frank, there is really nothing to worry about. A sedation dentist will have a thorough look through your medical history and make sure that the sedation procedures will not affect you negatively. If you have any worries, then make sure they are all cleared up before you go into the sedation dentistry procedures. You shouldn't commit to anything you feel uncomfortable with. If you dentist believes that sedation dentistry won't be in your best health interests, then he or she will not allow you to undergo the procedures.
Sedation dentistry is one of the newest and most forward-thinking movements in dentistry. If you're one of those people who needs lots of dental work done or who simply fears the dentist, then sedation dentistry may be the solution to your problems.
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