Individuals visiting the dental clinic always have that perception that IV sedation dentistry helps to keep patients calm. But if you dig deeper, you’ll discover that this approach is more than just for relaxation purposes.
Technically, the level of sedation advised by the dentist will vary on how anxious you get when getting a dental procedure. When you talk about IV deep sedation, it’s the medium level type that sedates you, but you’re not put to sleep. However, it lessens your awareness on your surroundings while the procedure is underway.
While there are various forms of sedation such as the nitrous oxide inhalation or the pill type, IV deep sedation is administered intravenously. IV sedation is indicated for patients who are experiencing moderate to high level anxiety when they know they’re about to undergo a dental procedure.
IV sedation may sound complicated but it actually isn’t. Once administered, it takes effect right away and adjusting the administered does is quite easy. Many people are unaware that this sedative type gives the patient amnesia. Meaning, the patient won’t remember what happened during the procedure.
However, IV sedation has one drawback. It’s highly important that the dentist administering this sedative should be well-trained. That’s why not all dentists have this type of sedative.
Preparing for IV sedation also requires adjustments. One major prep would have to be zero intake of food and drinks at least eight hours before visiting the dental clinic. But this would still depend on the instruction of the dentist.
It’s also highly recommended that you bring a companion when undergoing a dental procedure that requires IV sedation. Although it won’t put you to sleep, there’s a high possibility that you’ll feel groggy after the procedure. If this happens, your companion can help you get back home. Driving is strongly discouraged and having plans right after the procedure is also a no-no.
When the procedure is underway, expect that you’ll have limited awareness to your surroundings including what the dentist is doing. You may only follow basic commands or may only respond upon being touched by the dentist. But this is an expected side effect. You can normally breathe and your cardiac rate doesn’t need to be monitored. Local anaesthetics if needed, will only be administered once the sedative’s effect has taken place.
Individuals who get anxious right away or those with a history of panic attack episodes are ideal candidates of IV sedation, even if they are in good health. To know if you’re an ideal candidate of this, it’s best to consult your dentist. If you’re pretty confident you can handle the procedure or your anxiety is not that severe, perhaps other options might fit you such as inhaled or oral sedation.
After the procedure, you need to take your prescribed medications and avoid alcohol since the medication may stay in your body for as long as 24 hours. Minor bleeding, swelling or bruising is also possible on the injection site, while there are cases where patients claimed to experience nausea and vomiting.