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Sedation makes intensive dental procedures much more comfortable for our patients. Sedation can also make things much easier for the dentist as well. At Mill Dam Dental, we are proud to offer sedation dentistry for our Virginia Beach clients. Dr. Leidy has extensive training in sedation dentistry, so we are able to offer sedation for a wide range of procedures. If you are having a sedation dental procedure for the first time, it’s normal to wonder what to expect or even feel a little nervous. Making sure you’re properly informed and prepared for the procedure before your appointment can help you feel more comfortable. Here are some things you can do to prepare for a sedation dentistry procedure.

Consult With Your Dentist

Before your appointment, your dentist should have a consultation with you to discuss the procedure. During your consultation, be sure to ask all of the questions you have. It’s best to get as much clarification from the dentist as possible to ensure that you feel comfortable before your appointment.

During this time, your dentist will talk to you about the specific type of sedation you will undergo. The type of sedation you receive will influence the way you prepare for your appointment. There are three different types of sedation used for dental procedures. These are:

  • Inhaled minimal sedation: With this type of sedation, you inhale nitrous oxide through a mask during the procedure. While this type of sedation makes you feel relaxed, you won’t be asleep during the procedure. Inhaled sedation wears off very quickly, so you will be able to get yourself home safely.
  • Oral conscious sedation: With this type of sedation, you consume a medication called Halcion orally, either in tablet or liquid form. This medication makes you feel very relaxed and drowsy, but you will still be awake. This type of sedation takes longer to wear off, and you will usually need someone else to help you get home.
  • IV sedation: IV sedation is typically used for the most intensive dental procedures. You will receive medication through an IV that puts you completely to sleep for the procedure. You won’t have any awareness or feel anything during the procedure. This type of sedation takes much longer to wear off, so you will need help for the rest of the day.

During this consultation, you will also need to check in with your doctor about medications. If you are already taking any prescription medications, will you need to stop taking them the day of the procedure, or take them at a different time than normal? There are also some instances where you may need to get a prescription specifically for your procedure. If this is the case, be sure to get this prescription filled and stay in communication with your pharmacy.

Find A Family Member or Friend To Help

If you are receiving oral conscious sedation or IV sedation, you will need someone to help you get home. Depending on how you feel, you may need assistance with basic tasks throughout the rest of the day. Talk to your family members or friends to find someone who can take you home and help you out with anything you need as you recover. If you have school or work on the day of your appointment, you also may want to cancel or only go for a half day, depending on the type of sedation you will be receiving. If you are still feeling drowsy, it’s going to be difficult to go about your normal routine, and you want to give yourself some time to recover properly.

dentistry with sedation

Don’t Eat Prior To Your Appointment

Your dentist will likely instruct you not to eat or drink prior to being sedated. They will tell you exactly when to start fasting. Typically, you’ll need to stop eating around midnight the evening prior to your appointment. However, this will depend on the time of your appointment and the type of sedation you are receiving.

The reason why we ask you to fast prior to your appointment is because some patients feel nauseous when they are sedated. If you don’t have anything in your stomach, you are far less likely to feel nauseous during your appointment.

Although you won’t want to eat or drink the day of your appointment, you will want to make sure to stay hydrated and eat healthy foods in the week leading up to it. This will keep your body in good condition so you can heal properly after your appointment.

Choose A Comfortable Outfit

We want you to feel as comfortable as possible during your sedation dentistry appointment. Part of this is choosing an outfit that you know you can relax in. You are going to be sitting in the dentist’s chair for an extended period of time, so you won’t want to wear anything that’s too restrictive. You’ll also want to consider the temperature in the room – you want to stay warm, but not so much that you’re overheating.

Avoid wearing anything that’s too tight or will limit your movement. Comfy sweaters and T-shirts are great, as are pants with some stretch in them. You’ll also want to avoid irritating or itchy fabric. Finally, you’ll want to make sure you wear comfy, stable shoes that you can walk out in, as you may still feel a bit woozy on the way home.

If you prepare for a sedation dentistry procedure ahead of time, it makes the entire experience a little bit easier and more comfortable. At Mill Dam Dental, we want to make sure you’re as comfortable as possible during this experience. Contact us today to learn more about the sedation dentistry options we offer and schedule an appointment in our Virginia Beach office.