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What You Need to Know About Oral Sedation and Dental Care
Fear or anxiety about visiting the dentist is not uncommon amongst many people. Dental phobia can result in patients avoiding necessary dental care, which can have severe consequences in the long run. If you fall into this category, then you might want to consider oral sedation to make your dental procedure less stressful. In this article, we will discuss everything you need to know about oral sedation and dental care.
What Is Oral Sedation?
Oral sedation is a process by which a specialist administers medication in the form of pills or a liquid to make you feel relaxed during dental procedures. Depending on the dose and medication used, oral sedation levels can range from minimal to moderate. However, you will not be made unconscious, but instead, you will feel calm and may be able to doze off. Oral sedation is often used during procedures that are typically unpleasant or painful.
How Does Oral Sedation Work?
Oral sedation works by slowing down activity in your brain that enhances feelings of anxiety and fear. The medication prescribed to you belongs to a class of drugs known as anxiolytics. These medications work through several mechanisms that help counteract feelings of fear and anxiety. When taken orally, the medication works by stimulating a receptor in your brain that releases a neurotransmitter called gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). GABA is responsible for slowing down the central nervous system, which makes you feel less anxious.
What Are The Advantages Of Oral Sedation?
With oral sedation, you can expect to have reduced anxiety and an increased level of relaxation during your dental procedure. The medication takes effect relatively fast and lasts for several hours, allowing you to undergo a lengthy procedure comfortably. The sedative effect of the medication also helps lower the perception of pain, decreasing the amount of local anesthetic used during the procedure.
How Safe Is Oral Sedation?
Oral sedation is generally a safe procedure when administered under the supervision of a qualified dentist. It is essential to be honest with your dentist about your health history, medications you are taking, and any allergies you have. Your dentist near you will take all of these factors into account when prescribing the medication. Additionally, your dentist should monitor your vital signs throughout the procedure to ensure your safety.
What To Expect After Oral Sedation?
It is essential to have a designated driver who can take you home after the procedure since oral sedation effects last for several hours. You will be advised to avoid any strenuous activity and avoid driving for the rest of the day until the sedative effects have subsided entirely. You might also experience residual drowsiness, dry mouth, and a lapse of memory about the procedure. However, these symptoms will gradually fade off as the medication wears off.
Contact Us Today!
At 4th Street Family Dentistry in St. Pete, FL, we understand how essential dental care is in maintaining oral health. We are committed to making sure that our patients feel comfortable and relaxed during their procedures. If you are fretful about your dental procedure, oral sedation can significantly reduce your anxiety and help you feel less fearful. To learn more about oral sedation and how it can help you in your dental procedures, contact us at 4th Street Family Dentistry today.