Conscious I.V. Sedation
Are you extremely anxious about visiting the dentist?
Do you feel like you need some extra help to make your appointment less daunting? Then I.V. sedation may be an option for you.
During I.V. sedation, a medicine (very similar to Valium) is given to you either in your arm or hand. The medicine will make you feel very calm and relaxed, but will not put you asleep.
In this calm and relaxed state, you will feel more able to deal with the dental treatment and will be able to respond to any questions we may ask you throughout the treatment.
Under I.V. sedation, most people are unable to remember the dental treatment after their visit. This is because the medicine creates a short-term memory loss, which is of great benefit to many anxious patients.
This aid to dental treatment can be very effective in reducing the trauma associated with the dentist for those patients who experience high levels of anxiety at the prospect of an appointment.
If you think I.V. sedation may be for you, speak to one of our friendly reception staff to arrange an assessment with Dr. Lotte Ramsden who will be able to advise you further.
About IV Sedation
I.V. sedation is a procedure in which a relaxing medicine is given usually in the hand or arm (which feels very similar to having a blood test done).
The aim of I.V. sedation is to make you feel very relaxed and calm whilst having your dental care carried out. You will most likely not be able to remember your dental visit afterwards.
During a general anesthetic, you are completely asleep and cannot be aroused. You need help with vital functions such as breathing which requires an anesthetist to be present.
During I.V. sedation, you are relaxed but not asleep. You will be able to respond to conversation and you do not need medical assistance to maintain adequate breathing and heart function.
I.V. sedation is, therefore, a much safer procedure than a general anesthetic and can be carried out in general practice.
No. A dentist is required to undergo special postgraduate training in order to be able to carry out I.V. sedation.
Most adults, over the age of 16, are suitable for I.V. sedation. However, some people with certain medical conditions may need to be referred to a special Medical Centre for I.V. sedation. An assessment appointment is always carried out prior to treatment to ensure that I.V. sedation is the best option for you.
Oral sedatives are very similar medicines to those used in I.V. sedation. However, as oral medicines are absorbed more slowly it is difficult to know how much medicine is required for the right level of sedation. Everyone receives a standard dose and depending on the patient, in some cases it may be too low or too high.
The medicine given during IV sedation starts to work as rapidly as 30 seconds after administration. This instant effect allows us to ensure that just the right amount of medicine is given to every person ensuring optimum levels of sedation for all.
All dental care can be carried out whilst you are sedated. Some people are very anxious and have all their treatment carried out under sedation. Other people choose sedation only for a specific procedure they are nervous about, for example, the extraction of wisdom teeth.
After treatment under I.V. sedation, you will most likely feel tired and want to relax for the rest of the day. You will not be able to drive or operate heavy machinery for 24 hours after sedation. Ideally, you should not care for small children on your own or carry out any tasks that could put you at risk of injury, for example, cooking and making hot drinks, etc.
As you will not be able to drive after your sedation procedure you will need an escort to bring you to and from your dental visit. The escort should stay with you for the remainder of the day.
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