Phobias can be debilitating, especially when it comes to medical and dental procedures. Even something as simple as an annual teeth cleaning can induce physical reactions — making your palms sweat, your heart race, and your body produce a fight-or-flight response. This often results in avoidance, keeping you from getting needed treatment.
If you have dental phobia, also known as dentophobia or odontophobia, you might find it hard to place your trust in a dental team and make an appointment. Still, dental health is one of the top indicators of your overall well-being, and it’s essential to get cleanings, address cavities, and build rapport with your dentist.
Overcoming dental phobia and showing off your best smile can seem unattainable, but we’re here to help you thrive at Hometown Family Dental Centers. Our caring dental experts accommodate patients with dental phobia without judgment at three convenient locations — Fayetteville, Vass, and Raeford, North Carolina.
We have several options for sedation dentistry that can help you get the proper treatment for any dental issues.
What is sedation dentistry?
Dental sedation is the practice of using medication to help a patient relax during a dental procedure. Our practice offers three types of dental sedation to help put you at ease during even routine visits. It’s our goal to help you relax safely during your appointment, which means finding the correct type of sedation to help ease your fears and keep you comfortable in the dentist's chair.
The options available are:
- Nitrous oxide
- Oral sedation
- IV sedation
Your provider administers nitrous oxide, or “laughing gas,” by placing a mask on your face. The smell and taste is often described as sweet, and the effects are nearly instantaneous. It reduces anxiety and creates a sense of euphoria, allowing you to remain comfortable during a dental cleaning or other procedure. It also reduces pain associated with tooth sensitivity.
Oral sedation entails a pill you take before entering our office or upon arrival. Many medications are available, and we discuss your current medications and any concerns you have to prescribe the optimal medicine. The most common are diazepam and midazolam, which create a calming effect that lasts for a few hours.
IV sedation is the process of inserting a needle into your arm and administering a sedative intravenously. You are comfortably unaware of your time in the dentist’s chair, and you won’t remember the experience afterward, yet you’re conscious enough to respond to verbal cues from our team.
Depending on your level of anxiety, we discuss which option is best for your visit and the procedure you’re undergoing.
Is sedation dentistry safe?
The types of sedation we offer at Hometown Family Dental Centers are safe for children and adults. Our team carefully monitors you throughout the process and keeps you comfortable until the sedation wears off.
Some kinds of sedation require a family member or friend to take you home after your procedure is complete, as the effects can last for many hours. Your dentist discusses the after-effects of each medication, including what to expect and whether you can return to school or work that day.
Does sedation dentistry sound right for you?
It’s our goal to ensure that you get quality dental care with compassion. If dental sedation sounds like a suitable solution for better oral health, give us a call or request an appointment online. We’re happy to answer any questions and provide you with the information you need to feel safe and secure.