Oral Sedation & Nitrous Oxide Dentistry in Loxahatchee
Unfortunately, fear or anxiety can make going to the dentist an unpleasant experience for some patients. But avoiding the dentist often results in bigger issues with your oral health
Loxahatchee dentist Dr. Anis Elkhechen understands this, and he offers the option of using sedation dentistry during dental procedures to help fearful patients feel at ease.
What is Oral Sedation?
Imagine being able to truly relax through any dental procedure. I know this may seem impossible for many patients but it is true! For some patients, getting dental treatment may not be a big fear or hurdle. However, for many patients, an upcoming dental appointment may cause patients to have different levels of anxiety from just being a little nervous about anesthesia to losing sleep thinking about what will happen. We have many ways to lead to a very calming and relaxed dental appointment, including being attentive to specific desires of each patient, painless injection techniques, and Netflix in the ceiling so patients to watch their favorite shows. These are all standard steps we take at our office to ensure patient comfort, but there are additional steps we can take to help more anxious patients have a relaxing dental experience.
One of the most effective ways of helping patients relax during their dental appointments is through the use of oral sedation. Oral sedation involves one of our dentists writing a prescription for a patient after reviewing their medical history. This prescription is given to a patient to fill before an upcoming dental appointment. On the day of the patient’s dental appointment, the patient must have someone drive them to the dental office to drop them off and the patient must have someone pick them up after the procedure is finished. The patient cannot drive to or from the dental appointment on their own. On the day of the patient’s scheduled dental appointment, the patient must follow the instructions on the prescription, which will usually indicate that they take one tab from the bottle and consume it orally about one hour before their scheduled appointment time. The patient is instructed to bring the bottle with the remainder of any pills with them to the office. Once the patient is brought back to the dental operatory, the Doctor will assess if the patient should take more medication to help them relax further. The best part of oral sedation for patients is that you can see how much more relaxed they are in the dental chair. In addition, many times patients will not remember much from their dental appointment which is amazing because the patients who get more anxiety at the dental office usually do not associate relaxing thoughts with their dental appointments! When we see these patients at their next followup appointment you can see the sense of relief they have knowing that they do not have to stress over future dental appointments because they know they can relax!
What Is Nitrous Oxide?
Also called laughing or relaxation gas, nitrous is a calming agent that is mixed with oxygen and delivered through a mask that you wear throughout your dental procedure.
When it reaches your system, nitrous works immediately to help you feel relaxed and at ease. Many patients even feel a sense of euphoria, which is why it’s sometimes referred to as laughing gas.
Nitrous works quickly and it’s effective for helping many patients get the treatment they need
Is It Safe?
Nitrous leaves your system as soon as the mask is removed. So it’s not only safe during dental procedures, it’s also safe for patients to drive and return to normal activities after the use of nitrous oxide. Relaxation gas can be used during most procedures, and it’s safe for children as well.
If you choose nitrous for your dental procedures, you will be awake and responsive throughout your treatment while still feeling completely relaxed.
Who Is a Candidate for Using Nitrous Oxide?
Nitrous is ideal for many situations such as:
- Patients with a strong gag reflex
- Adults or children who experience anxiety about dental procedures
- Patients with special needs
- Patients who may require multiple complex procedures to be done during one appointment
If you have any concerns about upcoming dental procedures, Dr. Elkhechen is happy to discuss them with you prior to your visit to determine if nitrous oxide might be a good solution for you.
Other Options for Anxiety
At Groves Dental Care, our office was designed with your comfort in mind. We strive to make every patient feel welcome and relaxed.
State-of-the-art technology such as televisions in the ceilings of our treatment rooms act as a distraction so patients can watch their favorite programs during their procedures. We also encourage patients to bring headphones to enjoy their favorite music during treatment.
Dr. Elkhechen also utilizes a tool called DentalVibe. This technology creates a vibration, which essentially "tickles" the gums where they will be injected with a local anesthetic. The idea is to distract your brain with the tickling sensation so you don’t feel the injection at all.
If you would like to learn more about nitrous oxide or how we can help you, give Groves Dental Care a call today. We’re happy to discuss your needs and create a plan so that you can comfortably receive the dental care you need and deserve.