Specialists in Sleep
One out of seven people suffer from some form of dental anxiety.
These people may avoid going to the dentist, and often suffer severe consequences. If you are one of these people, you can choose Sleep Dentistry through either general anesthesia, twilight sleep or the use of nitrous oxide gas to relax you as we treat you. We will use a thorough assessment of your fears and concerns, and will help you determine the alternative that will best suit you.
What is Anesthesiology?
According to the American Society of Anesthesiologists, "Anesthesiology is the practice of medicine dedicated to the relief of pain and total care of the surgical patient before, during and after surgery." Anesthetics are the name given to the class of medication that blocks sensation of pain. (anesthesia literally means without sensation). The goal of all anesthesiology is to provide a safe surgical environment in which the patient is comfortable, and the surgeon can concentrate on the operation. Regardless of the type of oral surgery, it is important that the patient not feel pain, not move, and have stable vital signs within a normal range (heart rate and rhythm, blood pressure, and blood oxygen level)
IV SEDATION ( Conscious sedation) or Twilight Anesthesia, is a safe and effective method of anesthesia for procedures requiring relaxation but not unconsciousness. During the procedure, the anesthesia specialist delivers varying amounts of sedating and anesthetic medication through an intravenous (IV) line, monitoring the patient's comfort level and increasing or decreasing medication as needed (hence the name monitored anesthesia care).
GENERAL ANESTHESIA is a method of facilitating deeper anesthesia. With general anesthesia, the patient is unconscious and does not see, hear, or feel anything. It provides pain relief, and amnesia (so that you don't remember the details surrounding your dental procedures) all at the same time. This is accomplished using IV and or inhaled medications.
During the procedure, you will be monitored for changes in heart rate, blood pressure, oxygen blood levels, and heart rhythm (with an EKG monitor).
What is the Difference between Conscious Sedation and General Anesthesia?
Conscious sedation is the use of medication to "take the edge off", but requires that the patient be awake (conscious) during the procedure. When conscious sedation fails or is considered inappropriate for the nature or amount of dental work, deep sedation or general anesthesia is recommended. In our hands, it is as safe for the patient to receive deep sedation or general anesthesia as it is conscious sedation. With the use of modern, short-acting anesthetics, patients are just as awake and alert after general anesthesia as they are after conscious sedation.
What is Oral Sedation?
Oral sedation is a management technique that utilizes oral medications and sometimes nitrous oxide (laughing gas) to create a state of conscious sedation (relaxation and at times unawareness). This technique is advantageous for patients that have mild anxiety and fear. This technique may be used for children and adults depending upon the behavior of the child and level of anxiety of the adult patient. Oral sedation is not recommended for very young children.
What is Intravenous Conscious Sedation?
Intravenous conscious sedation is a technique that utilizes intravenous agents and sometimes nitrous oxide to help relax a patient that is anxious. This is a good technique for patients that have mild to moderate anxiety or fear of dental procedures. This technique is also advisable for adult patients who require a great deal of dental treatment and wish to have more treatment completed in fewer visits. Patients treated with conscious sedation usually have little to no memory of the dental procedure being performed.
What is General Anesthesia?
General Anesthesia is an anesthetic management technique, which uses intravenous and/or inhalation agents to ensure a completely unconscious (asleep) patient. This technique is recommended for very young children, very resistant children, severe dental phobics, and special needs patients who are unable to cooperate for dental treatment.