Sedation dentistry in Pasadena makes it possible for individuals who are afraid to go to the dentist to receive the dental care they need. It provides a relaxing, anxiety-free experience for people who would otherwise avoid getting the dental care and treatment needed for good health. Depending on the patient’s level of fear, sedation dentistry can be used for anything from a simple cleaning to invasive procedures.
Niloufar Molayem, D.D.S. provides sedation dentistry services to Pasadena and the surrounding area. At her holistic dental practice in Pasadena, Dr. Molayem has found nitrous oxide sedation to withstand the test of time as a safe and efficacious method, reducing barriers to care for patients who are fearful, phobic, or have special needs.
Levels of Dental Sedation
As patients have different levels of dental anxiety, there are different levels of sedation dentistry to treat it:
- Light sedation: Minimal sedation leaves the patient relaxed, but still awake, alert, and able to respond as needed.
- Moderate sedation: The patient remains conscious but probably won’t remember much of the dental procedure. Although able to communicate, the patient may feel groggy and slur his or her words. Some patients fall asleep, although they can be woken easily.
- Deep sedation: Not in the category of conscious sedation, deep sedation leaves the patient semi-conscious or unconscious during the procedure. Recovery time is longer with deep sedation. The patient does not regain consciousness until the drug is reversed or wears off.
What Is Conscious Sedation?
Conscious sedation dentistry allows the patient to enter a state of relaxation yet remain awake for the procedure. Although feeling no pain, the patient is still able to respond to questions and instructions from the doctor during the dental treatment.
While administering a local anesthetic can help ensure the patient’s physical comfort, it is not always sufficient to reduce fear and anxiety. Conscious sedation is used to treat dental anxiety, so you can relax while your Pasadena sedation dentist works on your teeth.
Types of Conscious Sedation
A sedation dentist can administer conscious sedation in several different ways:
- Inhalation sedation: This is done with nitrous oxide, administered through a mask placed over the patient’s nose. Laughing gas (nitrous oxide) is inhaled through the nose, expelled through the mouth, and wears off almost immediately after the procedure, with minimal side effects, for a quick recovery.
- Oral sedation: Medication taken orally approximately one hour before the dental procedure produces a light to moderate sedation effect. The patient is awake and able to respond but may feel drowsy during treatment. Recovery is longer than with inhalation sedation. Side effects are rare but may include nausea and vomiting.
- IV sedation: Medications delivered intravenously have a much faster effect than medications taken orally. This method allows the doctor to adjust the level of sedation during the procedure. IV sedation is considered moderate.
A notable benefit of a Pasadena sedation dentistry is that patients may feel their dental procedure took only minutes to perform, when it may have taken hours. Consequently, complex treatments such as extensive rebuilding or smile makeovers can be performed in fewer visits. In the practice of Niloufar Molayem, D.D.S., we offer sedation dentistry in Pasadena to help our patients receive the quality dental care they need.