Will I need recovery time if I use sedation during my dental procedure?
Sedation dentistry is a useful and valuable tool for patients who have significant dental anxiety or those who are facing complex, time-consuming interventions. It can help patients get the care they need and to streamline the treatment timeframe. However, taking advantage of sedation dentistry does require some planning on the patient’s part. Some sedatives may not be fully reversed before the patient leaves the appointment, so you should plan for a certain period of recovery. You will also need to make arrangements to have someone escort you home, as you will not be able to drive safely.
Before your appointment, your dentist will discuss your sedation dentistry options with you. The medications can be administered in various ways, and the delivery system will affect the preparations that are needed. Nitrous oxide wears off quite quickly, while oral and intravenous sedatives take a bit longer. Additionally, if you are using an oral sedation method, your dentist will give you a prescription for it so that it can be taken in advance of the appointment. For intravenous sedation, you will be instructed to avoid eating and drinking after a certain time.
In addition to identifying someone to escort you home from your appointment, you should also ask that person to remain with you until you have become fully alert again. This precaution is to ensure your safety while you are still under some influence of the sedatives.
There are numerous benefits to sedation dentistry. This approach allows the patient to remain conscious, although deeply relaxed during the appointment. Therefore, the patient is able to respond to commands from the dentist throughout the treatment. Additionally, sedation dentistry does not require artificial maintenance of the airway, as general anesthesia does.
Ask us any questions you have about the sedation dentistry process, including any concerns about the recovery period following your appointment. Our friendly, knowledgeable staff is happy to give you any information that you need.