Pain Management Options
Our office is committed to providing you with the best quality care with the most comfort. To ensure you will be comfortable and at ease, we offer many different pain management options. Please notify the staff which options you are interested in when scheduling your appointment. At your consultation you will be able to discuss with the doctor which option is best for you.
Local anesthesia is a type of anesthetic used to prevent pain in a specific area of your mouth during treatment by blocking the nerves that sense or transmit pain, which numbs mouth tissues. Local anesthesia is used in all procedures to make your treatment as comfortable as possible. It also helps with post-operative sensitivity.
Nitrous Oxide (laughing gas) is a sweet smelling, non-irritating, colorless gas which you can breathe. It has been the the primary means of sedation in dentistry for many years to help decrease anxiety allow you to feel more relaxed. You are able to breathe on your own and remain in control of all bodily functions. You may experience mild amnesia and may fall asleep not remembering all of what happened during your appointment. The recovery time is very short and the effects pass within minutes, so you will be able to drive yourself home.
Oral sedation is when a pill (usually Halcion, Ativan or Valium, all of which generally have a low incidence of side effects) is taken about an hour before your treatment, and will make you feel relaxed and somewhat sleepy. You will, however, remain awake, and will be able to interact with and respond to the dentist. The sedative effects can last for up to four hours. Sometimes you may also be prescribed a pill to take the night before your treatment to help you sleep. If this method of pain management is chosen, you will need to have a responsible adult drive you to and from your appointment.
IV sedation involves the use of sedative agents administered by way of an IV line directly into your bloodstream. This allows the gradual dosing of appropriate medications until you are safely and comfortably sedated. IV sedation is fast-acting and during your dental treatment you will feel no pain. You will not hear, smell or taste anything and you will have little or no memory of the procedure. This option is predictable, comfortable and ensures that your dental treatment can be easily completed. The recovery is simple and quick. As with oral sedation, you will need to have a responsible adult drive you home after your appointment.