Sedation Techniques to Make You Relax During a Root Canal Procedure

Adults and children alike can experience anxiety when it comes to visiting the dentist. Regardless of the cause of the fear, it can be very difficult for these people to receive any form of treatment for their teeth and gums. With the use of various sedation techniques, getting treated for tooth decay and other gum diseases can be bearable and even pleasant.

Conscious Sedation

One type of procedure that can make even grown men cringe is a root canal. The dental equipment that will be used can be intimidating to those who are already suffering from anxiety. Add to this fact that root canal procedures take longer to finish than simpler dental procedures, and you’ll understand why some don’t want to visit the dentist’s office. Fortunately, conscious sedation may be used to make the patient relaxed throughout the procedure. A sedative like nitrous oxide (or laughing gas) mixed with oxygen is delivered through a small mask over the patient’s nose. The gas can make mildly nervous patients more relaxed and comfortable enough to undergo the procedure without undue stress.

Sedatives can also be taken orally and can make the patient sleepy but easily aroused to follow the dentist’s simple commands. When oral sedatives are what the dentist recommends here she will give the patient instructions about whether they can eat or drink prior to taking them. Other ways of conscious sedation include giving it through the nose, intravenous drip, by a shot, or even by way of a suppository.

General Anaesthesia

For major dental procedures, such as surgery or multiple root canal procedures, some dentists prefer the patient to be unconscious. With general anaesthesia, the patient is put into deep sleep and cannot feel pain or move around. General anaesthesia for dental procedures is provided by a dental anesthesiologist, an oral and maxillofacial surgeon, and an anesthesiologist. As this type of sedation carries some risks, a professional will have to monitor the patient while sedated. The dentist will also assess beforehand if the patient is suited for this type of sedation.


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