If you suffer from dread at the thought of going to the dentist, you are not alone. One-third of our nation’s population suffers from dental anxiety. Most people cite pain or the sound of the drill as the reason for their fear even though modern dentistry is virtually painless. Fortunately, sedation and sleep dentistry make it easier for people to get dental care. Call us to learn more about sedation and sleep dentistry and how it can benefit you.

What Is Sedation for Dental Treatment?

At our office, we address your dental anxiety by offering sedation dentistry, also known as sleep dentistry in its strongest form. Our dentist administers medication to relieve your anxiety and make it possible for you to receive dental care. Call us to make an appointment for sedation dentistry in South Bend and we will do our best to make your dental experience a positive one.

It surprises most of our anxious patients that we understand how you feel. We don’t judge people who experience anxiety because we know it isn’t personal. Your concerns are perfectly valid. We offer sedation and explain the types of sedation upfront, so you know you’ll receive compassionate care from a dentist who wants to eliminate your anxiety.

How Much Does Sedation Dentistry Cost?

We base your sedation dentistry cost on the type of sedation our dentist uses and the amount of sedation he or she needs to administer. When you come in for an appointment, our dentist will discuss your options and their related costs with you. Our dentist will explain how we bill for sedation as well. Typically, we bill for laughing gas in 15 minute increments and oral sedation by the type and dosage of the pill prescribed.

Why Use Sedation for Dental Treatment?

If you have anxiety, sedation may be helpful because you won’t be aware of time passing. Your dentist can combine multiple appointments in one if you need extensive work, saving you from additional appointments. While sedation calms nervous patients, it’s also useful for individuals with a low pain tolerance or for people with a physical or mental disability that keep them still in the chair and comfortable during a procedure.

What Kinds of Sleep Dentistry Are Available?

We may offer a variety of methods to administer sedation depending on your level of anxiety, your medical history and your current medications.

Laughing Gas

Also called inhalation sedation, laughing gas offers a safe, relaxing feeling. You breathe in the odorless gas through a mask that fits over your nose. You’ll feel the effects quickly and they wear off just as quickly. In use since 1844, laughing gas is safe and has no known allergens.

Oral Sedation Dentistry

Oral sedation involves taking a pill about an hour before your appointment. Dentists often prescribe a drug in the benzodiazepine family, such as Xanax, Valium or Halcion, which will make you relaxed and drowsy. Dentists sometimes use inhalation sedation with oral sedation.

IV sedation dentistry

IV sedation, or conscious sedation, does not put you fully to sleep. It works quickly and offers an amnesiac effect so you don’t remember your procedure. This can help patients who are anxious about visiting a dentist because they fear pain. We recommend not eating or drinking in the eight hours before your appointment. You should also refrain from taking any medicine during this time unless your dentist clears it first.

Deep Sedation

Deep sedation is a form of IV sedation where you fall asleep, but it’s not general anesthesia. With deep sedation, or sleep dentistry, your dentist can still wake you if necessary. Dentists usually reserve deep and IV sedation dentistry for patients with extreme anxiety or patients who are having long, complex procedures.

What Are the Advantages of Choosing Sedation Dentistry?

Sedation dentistry in South Bend offers several important advantages. It relaxes anxious patients and makes the time spent in the chair fly by. If you’re having a long procedure, sedation will make you unaware if the passing time. Sedation dentistry also helps patients who have a strong gag reflex.

Will My Dental Insurance Pay for Sedation?

Unless you’re having oral surgery, you probably won’t have sedation dentistry insurance coverage. Check with your dental insurance provider for details of your sedation coverage. If you have to pay for sedation out-of-pocket, we have financing options so the cost will fit into your budget. Delaying treatment because you’re anxious may cause you to need more expensive dental care later on.

How Long Do the Effects of Sedation Dentistry Last?

Laughing gas wears off very quickly. After you sit for a few moments, you can drive home safely. If you choose oral sedation dentistry, the aftereffects can last up to eight hours depending on the dose. Have a friend or family member drive you home and stay with you until the effects wear off. If you have IV sedation dentistry, someone must drive you home. Have someone stay with you until you’re fully conscious. Do not operate heavy machinery or drive or for 24 hours afterward. Your dentist will also explain what you can and cannot do until the sedative is out of your body.

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