Maybe fear of pain or anxiety about visiting the dentist is holding you back from getting the dental treatment you need. We understand that dental visits do not always make the top of your priority list, but we want you to know that we have some options available to make visits more manageable. Cosmetic dentist Nicholas Rallis, DDS and Dr. Gordon Barnes, our board-certified dental anesthesiologist, offer sedation dentistry at our practice, the perfect complement to your treatment plan if you suffer from dental anxiety or fear. Let us create the healthy, beautiful smile you deserve! Read some of our patient reviews to see how you can enjoy anxiety-free dental visits.
Sedation dentistry encompasses a number of techniques designed to alleviate patients’ varying anxiety levels before dental treatment. This done with the goal of creating a relaxing and comfortable treatment experience, free from the stress or apprehension commonly associated with going to the dentist. If you feel dread when thinking about a dental appointment or have let the fear of pain stop you from receiving necessary dental treatment in the past, sedation dentistry can offer an advanced solution to your concerns. The effects of each type of sedation range from a state of conscious relaxation to a sleep-like state with a low likelihood of recollection. The appropriate sedation method for you will depend on your unique needs and the type of treatment you are undergoing. Sedation dentistry is administered by Dr. Gordon Barnes, our board-certified anesthesiologist, and is typically ideal for lengthier dental procedures, such as full mouth reconstruction or dental implants.
Many patients find it difficult to relax in the dentist’s chair or feel very anxious on the days leading up to their dental appointment. Everyone is different and there is nothing to be ashamed of if you have dental phobias or high levels of anxiety. We offer several sedation options to help you feel more relaxed before and during your visit. These solutions are ideal for patients who:
Sedation can help you feel more relaxed during visits and easily allows numbness prior to treatment.
Undergoing treatment with the aid of sedation dentistry has helped many patients receive the dental work they need without the apprehension or uneasiness that may be associated with going to the dentist. For individuals who avoid dental treatment as a result of this anxiety, this can help prevent minor issues—such as a cavity or mild gum disease—from developing into more severe problems. Furthermore, if you have sensitive gums and teeth, or an overactive gag reflex, sedation dentistry may be able to provide a smoother treatment experience. Our sedation options are personalized according to your unique needs and comfort levels, with our goal being to extend the highest quality of patient care possible.
Nitrous Oxide (Laughing Gas)
Nitrous oxide can be an ideal sedation method for patients with mild anxiety concerning their dental treatment. It has been utilized for decades and typically induces a pleasant and comfortable state of mind while an individual remains fully aware of their surroundings. The effects of the laughing gas are generally within a few minutes of ingestion and should wear off quickly with removal of the breathing apparatus. Patients are usually able to drive themselves home after treatment, but Dr. Rallis or Dr. Barnes will make sure you are in suitable driving condition prior to leaving the office.
Administered in the form of a small pill ingested before treatment, this approach typically allows patients to enter a state of complete and total relaxation while remaining conscious. Although individuals can be cognizant of their surroundings, they often do not remember the treatment process after the effects of sedation wear off. You are monitored by our team throughout the entire procedure and will need to be driven home by a friend or family member.
For select cases involving more extreme levels of dental anxiety, intravenous (IV sedation) can be utilized to put patients at ease before treatment. With IV sedation, a controlled anti-anxiety medication is delivered to the bloodstream. Individuals enter a calming, sleep-like state while their condition and vitals are monitored by our team. Most patients retain minimal to no memory of the procedure. As the effects of the solution can be felt for a few hours after treatment, those who complement their treatment with IV sedation should arrange for a ride home.
|Nitrous Oxide (Laughing Gas)
|Administered through a mask to help you relax throughout treatment
|Anti-anxiety medication keeps you relaxed during treatment
|Sedation administered into the bloodstream
|Relaxed within minutes
|Vital signs monitored throughout
|We control depth of sedation and vital signs are monitored
|Effects wear off shortly after gas is stopped
|Effects may last several hours, we recommend arranging for someone to drive you home after your appointment
|Allows for more extensive work in one visit; most patients have no memory of visit. Effects may last several hours, we recommend arranging for someone to drive you home after your appointment
The fees for sedation dentistry generally depend on which method was employed during your treatment. According to Dental Economics magazine, the cost of sedation dentistry can range from approximately $50 for nitrous oxide, to $245 for oral sedation, to roughly $560 for IV sedation. While these figures do not necessarily reflect the prices at our practice, they may be able to help inform your decision when researching treatment options. After your consultation, our office will be able to give you an accurate quote of what your procedural expenses would be if sedation techniques were employed. To make it easier for you to receive the most comfortable treatment experience possible, our dentists work with CareCredit®— a highly reputable dental financing company that offers qualified applicants a range of flexible payment plans. Once approved through the easy application process, individuals can choose from a variety of low- to no-interest options to accommodate their budgetary concerns. If you have any additional questions about the cost of sedation dentistry, please contact our practice to speak to a friendly member of our team.
Although they do not always occur, mild side effects after your sedation-assisted treatment are possible, depending on which technique was utilized. Nitrous oxide rarely produces side effects once the gas is no longer ingested, although an incorrect dose may cause patients to feel temporarily lightheaded. Both oral-conscious sedation and IV sedation often cause individuals to retain no memory of their procedure. Side effects like dizziness or headaches generally occur when sedation is administered in an incorrect amount, highlighting the importance of having an accredited dental anesthesiologist monitor your treatment.
Sedation dentistry is considered a safe, useful technique to help patients alleviate their dental anxiety. In fact, sedation methods like nitrous oxide are often used as a reliable and harmless tool to calm children who are nervous about visiting the dentist. With that said, the safety of any treatment ultimately relies on whether a well-trained and experienced professional is exercising control over the procedure. At Center For Smiles, we provide patients with the highest quality of care by having all sedation administered and monitored by Dr. Gordon Barnes, our board-certified dental anesthesiologist. Dr. Gordon Barnes is not only a Diplomate of the American Dental Board of Anesthesiology, but he is also a member of the American Society of Dentist Anesthesiologists and the Society for Ambulatory Anesthesia. Needless to say, Dr. Barnes has the skills, experience, and compassion necessary to help ensure you feel comfortable, safe, and relaxed during treatment.
Look forward to anxiety-free dental visits so you can take better care of your smile! Schedule your appointment today. Learn more about our sedation provider by visiting their website.