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Carleton Square Dental Centre - For Anxious Patients
Carleton Square Dental Centre is proud to offer oral sedation dentistry for those patients who would find it more confortable. A significant number of Canadians do not visit the dentist for regular checkups because they are too fearful or suffer from dental anxiety.
Oral Conscious Sedation
Oral conscious sedation is an excellent choice for people who fear needles and to provide a safe, anxiety-free, dental experience to those who are afraid of the dentist. Oral medication is provided prior to treatment in order to induce a moderate state of sedation. Though oral sedatives do not cause sleep, they usually dull the senses. This means that most patients cannot remember the pain, smells or noises associated with the procedure. Usually, a dose of medication is taken prior to the appointment, and then topped up during the procedure as required. Sedation dentistry is often mistakenly thought to induce sleep. In fact, oral sedatives allow the patient to stay awake during the procedure. Sleepiness is a side effect of some medications, but oral conscious sedation only works to calm anxiety throughout the dental visit. Sedation dentistry is popular because most sedatives can be taken by mouth, meaning no injections, no anxiety and no pain. Safety and compliance are two important aspects of treatments, so sedation dentistry offers both the individual and the dentist the best alternative. Whatever the form of sedative, it is essential to be accompanied by a caregiver. Sometimes, sedatives are provided the night before the dental visit, which means that driving to or from the appointment is not advisable.
Here are some advantages associated with oral sedation dentistry:
What types of drugs are used in oral conscious sedation?
Most of the drugs used in sedation dentistry are classified as benzodiazepines. Benzodiazepines reduce anxiety, muscle spasms, insomnia and seizures. Each medication has a different half-life, meaning that the effects last for varying amounts of time. The estimated length of the procedure determines which type of drug is going to be most effective.
Here are some of the most common drugs used in oral conscious sedation:
Valium® – This sedative has amnesic properties and a long half-life. It is usually used for time-consuming, complex procedures.
Halcion® – Usually used to treat insomnia, Halcion is an effective sedative with amnesic properties. A short half-life makes this sedative useful for shorter procedures.
Ativan® – This sedative is best known for reducing anxiety. It has amnesic properties and a medium half-life. Ativan is typically used for treatments shorter than two hours.
If you have questions or concerns about sedation dentistry, please talk to one of our dentists.