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Sedation Dentistry – Green Hills, TN

The Solution to Fear and Anxiety

If the thought of visiting your dentist makes you anxious and impacts your daily life, you may be surprised to know that you’re not alone. In fact, a study conducted in June of 2015 showed that this is a widespread issue among people of all ages. Dental anxiety can pose a serious problem for both patients and dentists alike, which is why at Green Hills Dental Center, we offer sedation. These techniques can help you relax and remain calm during your treatment so you can get the care you need without having it gravely impact your mental health. To find out how we can help you, don’t hesitate to contact our team!

What is Sedation Dentistry?

person smiling and drinking a cup of coffee

Does the thought of having dental tools shuffled around in your mouth make your body tense up? Waiting until the last minute to visit your dentist for treatment can put your oral health at serious risk. With sedation dentistry, we can help patients who would rather avoid getting the care they need feel comfortable and at ease. This way, they won’t have to worry about small problems progressing into severe ones. Using nitrous oxide, you’ll can remain awake and responsive without being full of fear. This way, your sedation dentist in Green Hills can take proper care of your teeth and gums.

Nitrous Oxide Sedation

Man relaxing with nitrous oxide sedation in Nashville

Nitrous oxide, more commonly known as laughing gas, is one of the most common forms of sedation. It places patients in a euphoric state and minimizes sensitivity to pain during the treatment. The gas is inhaled through a small mask that is placed over your nose. We’ll be able to easily adjust the dosage through the procedure to help you maintain optimal relaxation. This safe, easy, and reliable form of sedation dentistry is a great choice for most patients who are nervous about dental care or need some extra help to feel comfortable in the examination chair.

Who Is a Good Candidate for Nitrous Oxide Sedation?

Woman giving thumbs up after nitrous oxide sedation in Nashville

One of the biggest reasons why nitrous oxide sedation is the most common form of dental sedation is that nearly any patient can qualify for it. Nitrous oxide sedation can be a safe and effective choice for children, teens, adults, and older adults alike. As long as you aren’t breastfeeding, have certain medical conditions, or are currently suffering from nasal congestion, we will generally recommend nitrous oxide sedation for patients who:

  • Have sensitive teeth, gums, or gag reflex
  • Feel nervous or anxious during their appointments
  • Typically don’t respond well to numbing medication
  • Experience neck, shoulder, back, or other pain while in the dental chair

Before recommending nitrous oxide sedation, we’ll meet with you for a conversation about your concerns and review your medical history. We will always check for potential complications to ensure that nitrous oxide sedation is an effective and safe choice for you personally.

How Does Nitrous Oxide Sedation Work?

Woman relaxing with nitrous oxide sedation in Nashville

Nitrous oxide is a colorless, odorless gas that is administered via a small mask placed over your nose. This gas helps slow down your brain’s activity ever so slightly, and many patients report that being sedated with nitrous oxide feels like being put into a dreamlike state. In fact, you may feel so relaxed and at-ease that you may giggle a bit from time to time, hence its name as laughing gas!

During your treatment, you’ll remain conscious enough to respond to simple questions and follow easy instructions. That being said, you may drift off into a light sleep and you may not remember your appointment afterwards. We will monitor your breathing and heart rate the entire time you’re sedated, and we’ll be able to adjust your level of sedation at any time to ensure you are as safe and comfortable as possible.

Aftercare for Nitrous Oxide Sedation

Woman feeling confident after using nitrous oxide sedation in Nashville

There are a few factors that go into how long the effects of the gas will last, like your size, how much you inhaled, and whether you’ve eaten before your appointment. Typically, the effects of nitrous oxide sedation will dissipate within a few minutes of removing the mask, and you can carry on with your day uninterrupted. Some additional short-term effects you may notice include dizziness, fatigue, and nausea, but these typically will go away once you regain alertness.

Good Candidates for Sedation Techniques

Seeing a sedation dentist in Green Hills has countless benefits for patients who experience fear or anxiety. Good candidates for nitrous oxide can also include patients who have:

  • Sensitivity teeth, gums, and gag reflex.
  • Physical or cognitive impairments.
  • Multiple or complex planned procedures that need to be completed in a single visit.

You can learn more about our services by visiting our office or contacting us. Our caring and compassionate team would be more than happy to help answer your questions. Dr. James Kirby is dedicated to making patients feel comfortable so they can receive high-quality, worry-free dental care.

Sedation Dentistry FAQs

happy child playing on a playground

Would you like to learn more about how you can ease your fear or anxiety associated with the dental office? Visiting your sedation dentist in Nashville will ensure that your next treatment is smooth and stress-free. For your convenience, we’ve answered some common questions we receive about sedation dentistry below.

Will I feel anything during my treatment?

In a majority of sedation cases, patients don’t feel a thing during their treatment. Patients often feel comforted and relaxed throughout their procedure, experiencing little to no discomfort until the effects of the sedation begin to wear off. Patients also remain conscious and responsive during the treatment, but just in a deep state of relaxation.

Is sedation dentistry safe?

Sedation dentistry is an incredibly safe and effective solution for patients who are good candidates. During your initial consultation, Dr. Kirby, your sedation dentist in Green Hills, will walk you through the process and make sure that you feel comfortable before the procedure begins. He’ll also ask you about any medical conditions you may have, such as sleep apnea, to assess any possible risk factors and ensure that your safety won’t be compromised.

How long will it take for the effects of my sedation to wear off?

Depending on the type of sedation you receive, the effects may linger for hours, or go away after just a few minutes. With nitrous oxide, as soon as our team removes the mask from your nose, you should feel yourself becoming less groggy and cloudy. After a few minutes, the effects should have completely worn off, allowing you to continue on with your day as you normally would.

Will I remember my dental treatment?

Although you’ll remain conscious and responsive during your appointment, most patients don’t actually remember the treatment itself. This is incredibly beneficial for our patients who have severe anxiety associated with dental offices and makes the experience less traumatizing. A common side effect of sedation is the short-term loss of memory, so don’t feel worried if this happens to you.

Is sedation dentistry safe for children?

It’s not uncommon for children to receive sedation during a dental treatment, especially for children who are on the autism spectrum or have trouble sitting in the treatment chair. This allows them to safely receive high-quality dental care without being anxious or on-edge throughout their entire visit. For children who are good candidates for nitrous oxide, the procedure itself is typically incredibly safe. During your consultation, we’ll discuss all of your options with you and make sure that your child remains comfortable and stress-free in our office.