Poway and Rancho Bernardo, CA
Millions of people have dentophobia, which is a fear of the dentist. If you are one of those individuals, you probably haven’t been to the dentist in years, which means that you may not be receiving the necessary oral care that you need. While at-home oral hygiene efforts are important, eventually we all need dental treatments. Ignoring dental concerns when they arise may leave you in pain, embarrassment, and feeling like you’re out of options. A sedation dentist in Poway, Dr. Nicol Cook, offers several options to help those dealing with dental anxiety. Let’s explore the different options and see which one might be a good fit for you.
Light sedation involves using nitrous oxide or “laughing gas.” This is ideal for patients receiving general dental care such as a cleaning, filling, or dental crown. For short appointments, light sedation may be a good option because you remain awake the entire time and are able to communicate with your dental care team, although you will feel extremely relaxed and carefree. Plus, the best part about it is that the effects wear off rather quickly after your appointment, which means that you can continue on with your day. No recovery or downtime is needed.
If you are undergoing a more intensive or lengthier appointment, then moderate sedation may be right for you. Moderate sedation involves taking an oral sedative about 20-30 minutes prior to your appointment. While you will remain responsive, moderate sedation puts you in a deeper state of relaxation than laughing gas. With moderate sedation, however, you should prepare ahead of time by having someone drive you to and from your appointment, and plan on taking the rest of the day off from your usual activities or work. It may take several hours for the effects of the sedation to wear off.
Conscious Oral Sedation
If you are receiving intensive treatment, have severe dental anxiety or the inability to sit still for lengthy amounts of time, you may benefit from conscious oral sedation. This also is referred to as deep sedation or “sleep dentistry,” because you will remain in a sleep-like state throughout your appointment. While you will not be fully unconscious, you will not have the ability to respond or feel any discomfort.
How do I know if sedation dentistry is right for me?
If you are fearful or experience anxiety at just the thoughts of going to the dentist, then sedation dentistry may be the solution for you. It is essential that you take care of your oral health, and by doing so, that often means seeing your dentist at least twice a year for cleanings and checkups. Some individuals are so fearful of the dentist that they will avoid these recommended appointments, which only leads to the need for more extensive treatments later on.
Sedation Dentist in Poway
If you would like to learn more about our sedation dentistry options or to see which option may be the right fit for you, please contact Smiles by Dr. Cook today for an appointment, or call (858) 673-0141. Dr. Cook will ask you questions and assess your oral health to determine the best options for you, and to see if you are a candidate for sedation dentistry. We welcome patients of Poway and Rancho Bernardo, California.