Oral surgery can be a daunting prospect, especially for patients who have some anxiety about less invasive dental procedures.
Fortunately, patients facing oral surgery procedures can choose sedation dentistry for a more comfortable experience to put their minds at ease. Furthermore, patients who will have a complex and lengthy surgery can tolerate a longer procedure while under sedation.
In addition to the local anesthetic, your oral surgeon can administer an anti-anxiety medication to help you achieve a state of deep relaxation. Most patients have no recollection of the procedure after it happens.
Although general anesthesia can achieve similar effects and is often used for oral surgery, many patients find sedation dentistry to be a safer, more appealing option.
Unlike general anesthesia, which renders the patient unconscious, patients remain awake (although deeply relaxed) while under sedation. This allows the patient to continue to respond to the oral surgeon’s commands.
Additionally, while general anesthesia compromises the airway and requires that it be artificially maintained throughout the procedure, sedation dentistry does not have that same effect. The patient’s airway remains open for the duration of the surgery while under sedation.
The surgical team carefully monitors patients’ vital signs while they are under sedation so that they can take action if any concerns arise.
An oral surgeon may use different methods to deliver the sedative medications, such as intravenously or orally. You can select the method that seems most comfortable for you. You will need to plan accordingly. For example, IV sedation may require fasting for at least 12 hours in advance of the procedure.
Regardless of the form of sedative medication you choose, you should be prepared to have someone take you home following your appointment. The effects of the drugs will not be fully reversed by the time you go home, and you will be unable to drive.
Patients who are facing an upcoming oral surgery procedure have the option to consider sedation dentistry. Talk to our oral surgeons to learn more about how sedation might be beneficial in your case. Call 703-425-5010 today.