January 10, 2018
It’s the last place you want to be in. You know you need to get your teeth examined, but the idea of sitting in that dental chair makes you physically ill. Every time you try to visit you end up leaving before the dental assistant can call you in. Luckily, your sedation dentist in Northern Virginia understands your frustration.
That’s why they are offering their services to make your dental visit as relaxing as possible. If you don’t gain anything else from today’s article, just know that you are not alone when it comes to dental anxiety.
Dental Phobia is Common Throughout the Country
According to studies on dental phobia, between 9 and 15 percent of Americans avoid seeing the dentists because of anxiety or fear of their appointment. That’s about 30 to 40 million people. People who have a phobia or anxiety of dental visits end up avoiding the dentist for years at a time. This puts them at much higher risk of contracting gum disease, having tooth pain, and living with broken teeth.
It’s exactly this reason that dentists across the country provide sedation in some form. The last thing your sedation dentist in Northern Virginia wants is for patients to suffer from oral complications because of something they can’t control. Instead of expecting the patient to take the initiative, innovations in dental medication and treatment have made it easier for them to get necessary cleanings and procedures.
What is Sedation Dentistry?
Sedation dentistry is the practice of using medication to help patients relax during dental visits. It’s important to keep in mind that patients who take sedatives are not put to sleep entirely. While they are technically awake during treatment, it’s common for them to not remember most or even all of the treatment. In fact, one of the common side effects of sedation medication is retrograde amnesia.
If you experience any of the following symptoms or habits, you’ll likely be a candidate for sedation during treatment:
- You experience severe anxiety or fear around dental instruments
- You avoid dental treatments entirely out of fear
- Have a sensitive gag reflex
- Have trouble resting in a dentist chair or have neck/back problems
- Have trouble feeling numb even after local anesthetic is administered
What Methods are Available?
One of the most common methods is known as oral conscious sedation. This method is ideal for those with mild to moderate anxiety and is designed to make you feel drowsy, but awake. After the dentist determines your eligible for sedation, they’ll give you a pill to take at specific time. That way by the time you’re in the dental chair, you’ll be relaxed and ready to receive treatment.
Common side effects or oral conscious sedation include amnesia of the treatment, decreased post-operative soreness, and dry mouth. Since these drugs have been studied for years, they are safe for most patients.
To see if you qualify for sedation dentistry, contact your dentist in Northern Virginia today. Don’t let anxiety prevent you from maintaining the oral health you deserve!
About the Author
Dr. Wayne Myles earned his D.D.S. at Georgetown Dental School and continued his education for many different dental treatments and practices. This includes getting certified in Sedation Dentistry through the Dental Organization for Conscious Sedation so he can help patients get the treatment they need to stay healthy. To learn more about his practice, contact him at (703) 925-0800 or visit his website.
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