Overcoming Dental Phobia With Sedation Dentistry

dental sedationWhat Is Sedation Dentistry?

Let's face it, not everyone enjoys the dental office as much as Water Tower Dental. In fact, 5 to 10 percent of adults in the US experience dental phobia. That is to say, they fear the dentist so strongly that they'll avoid the doctor at all costs. In these cases, we like to offer our patients to partake in the practice of Sedation Dentistry: the use of pharmacological agents to relax a patient during their dental examination.

We take our patient's health and well being very seriously. We want them to all have the brightest, healthiest smiles possible, but we understand it can be hard for some of our patients to relax in the dentist's chair for very long. The practice of Sedation Dentistry helps calm a patient's nerves and allows them to stay relaxed while our doctor's care for them.
While there are numerous methods for sedation, Water Tower Dental uses two methods: oral conscious sedation and nitrous oxide sedation. Both methods are safe and widely used throughout the dental industry. The difference comes in timing and strength.
Oral conscious sedation is a medication taken orally before your visit to the dentist. While the medication leaves you conscious and able to ask questions, you will have a feeling of complete relaxation. Often patients with oral sedation lose track of time and fall asleep in the dentist's chair from being so relaxed. Because the medication takes time to wear off (typically, effects subside by the following day), it is recommended you have someone to drive you and look after you after visiting the dentist.
Nitrous oxide sedation, also known as laughing gas, is a colorless and odorless gas that is inhaled through the nose while the dentist is able to perform their procedures. The gas makes you feel calm and relaxed, once removed, the effects of the nitrous oxide will subside. This allows you to monitor yourself after treatment and even drive yourself home immediately after the visit.

Do You Need Dental Sedation?

Dental fear and phobia are very common within adults. While 5 to 10 percent of adults in US experience dental phobia, almost 75% of adults in the US harbor some kind of dental fear, from mild to severe. So how do you know if your fear is too much to handle the dentist's chair or if you just need a little courage?
Here are a few signs of dental phobia that can help you know how severe your fear is:

  • The night before the dental exam, you have trouble sleeping.
  • You anxiousness increases while in the dentist's waiting room.
  • The thought of the dental visit makes you physically ill
  • You panic, or your reflexes trigger, when dental instruments are placed in your mouth.
  • You feel emotionally unstable when thinking of the dentist or their instruments.

We also suggest sedation dentistry if:

  • Local anesthetics do not affect you as well
  • You have a sensitive gag reflex
  • You have other health issues, such as bad back or neck that could lead to discomfort in the dentist's chair.

If any of these describe you, there's a very good chance you would benefit from dental sedation. But there's nothing to worry about. Water Tower Dental is the premier dentist in Chicago. We treat each patient with great care. And, if you address your fear and let us know, we can help you overcome the anxiety with the help of sedation dentistry.
If you have more questions, do not be afraid to call and talk with us before committing to an appointment. We would be happy to hear from you.