Dentists are one of the most feared medical professionals in the industry, and dentists themselves are often bewildered by this fact. A dentist is there to help, to improve oral health, and to alleviate discomfort or problems with teeth. Why, then, are so many patients irrationally afraid of these medical professionals? Part of the reason may be because of the intimate nature of dentistry. Having a strange person’s fingers in your mouth is uncomfortable, embarrassing, and sometimes even painful. The fear of dentistry may be due to a past experience of pain or discomfort. It may also be due to feelings of guilt regarding poor dental hygiene habits. Any or all of these reasons may be responsible for the large number of consumers who regularly skip dental checkups because of fear.
What is Sedation Dentistry?
Sedation dentistry, however, may be an alternative to playing hooky with the dentist. During a sedation dentistry procedure, general anesthesia is delivered to the patient, which puts the patient to sleep. While the patient snoozes, the dentist and hygienist are able to perform the entire dental checkup.
Is it Risky?
As with any medical procedure, there are some risks associated with sedation dentistry. Most of these risks are simply associated with an adverse reaction to the anesthesia used during the procedure. However, a professional dentist who utilizes sedation dentistry techniques will always have the necessary equipment and training to monitor patient health and identify any potential problems or reactions to anesthesia medication.
Your dentist will also perform a thorough medical history check and initial interview to determine if you are a good candidate for sedation dentistry. The risks, of course, are far outweighed by the potential benefits of sedation dentistry. For individuals who would pass up regular dental checkups because of an irrational or real fear of dental exam pain and discomfort, sedation dentistry is a valuable alternative. With sedation dentistry, the patient is allowed to sleep peacefully and contentedly, unaware of the dental procedure. When the anesthesia wears off, the patient awakes with minimal discomfort, and the dental checkup has already been completed.
Sedation is already used in many dental surgeries, and it is becoming more and more popular as a tool for regular dental checkups. If dentist phobias are getting in the way of your oral health, talk to your dentist today about sedation dentistry. Whenever there’s a problem, the best solution is to “sleep” on it.
Advanced Family Dental & Orthodontics, PC’s, Rene Tanquilit, DDS is a general dentist certified in sedation dentistry. Call us at 815-741-1700 to set up your appointment with Dr. Tanquilit or request your appointment online.