Nothing inspires more fear in a dental patient than the phrase, “You need a root canal.” Used to repair teeth that have developed an internal infection or damage, the pain often associated with this procedure is largely a myth, and most patients report that it feels like having a small filling placed. However, it still causes a lot of patients to experience anxiety, so much so that many skip out on their much needed care. Thankfully, with sedation dentistry in Saratoga, your endodontist can make any nerves disappear while you’re in the chair so you can get your root canal without any stress.
What is Sedation Dentistry?
Sedation dentistry, as you might have guessed, combines dental services and different types of sedation in order to help a patient feel more comfortable. In addition to making a patient feel calmer mentally, sedation dentistry can also prevent a person from experiencing any physical discomfort while in the chair, leading to a much more soothing experience. It can also enable a patient to have more work done in a single appointment to save time. Many dentists offer multiple types of sedation that can be tailored to a patient and what kind of procedure they need. It’s commonly used during root canals, and many patients are surprised to learn they have so many options.
The Common Types of Sedation Used During Root Canals
- Nitrous Oxide: A patient wears a small mask over their nose and breathes in a combination of oxygen and nitrous oxide. This gives the patient a warm, happy feeling while also making them slightly numb all over. It’s fast acting, and the effects quickly go away once the mask is removed.
- Oral Conscious Sedation: For a patient with more severe dental anxiety, they can be prescribed a pill to take at home on the day of their appointment. That way, by the time they actually reach the dentist’s office for their root canal, they’ll already be completely relaxed both mentally and physically.
- IV Sedation: This is a very potent form of sedation, in which a sedative is administered directly into the bloodstream. This sedates a patient very quickly and deeply, and it can be adjusted in real time to ensure someone remains comfortable from moment to moment.
Is Sedation Right For You?
If you’re in need of a root canal, sedation is definitely an option, so be sure to let your endodontist know if you’d like to use it. They’ll need to know how anxious you feel about your root canal, if you are taking medication, and if you have any medical conditions they should be aware of. Based on your input, they’ll be able to recommend the perfect type of sedation. Just follow their instructions on the day of your appointment, and your root canal will be over before you know it, and your only thought will be, “That’s it?!”
About the Author
Dr. An Nguyen is a highly-respected endodontist who obtained her dental degree from the University of Michigan School of Dentistry and received her specialty training in endodontics at the Saint Louis University Center for Advanced Dental Education. She and our team always take our patients’ comfort very seriously, so if you’re nervous about getting a root canal in Saratoga, be sure to ask about our multiple sedation options. For questions, or to schedule an appointment, contact us today.