Sedation Dentistry

Sedation Dentistry in Staten Island, New York

Sedation Dentistry helps patients in Staten Island, NY feel at ease during complex and invasive dental procedures, such as root canal therapy and tooth extraction. Although some people call it sleep dentistry, in sedation dentistry you are conscious throughout the entire procedure. Meant for patients with a high level of dental phobia, sedation dentistry allows patients to endure dental procedures without anxiety and pain. Dr. Frank DiCicco and Dr. Colleen Intatano offers sedation dentistry at their Staten Island, New York practice to ensure the comfort and overall satisfaction of his patients. Don’t let your fear of the dentist stand in the way of a perfect smile. Schedule an appointment with Dr. DiCicco or Dr. Intatano today.

What is Sedation Dentistry?

Sedation dentistry is the process by which a patient is sedated and still conscious throughout the dental procedure; however, they are in a relaxed state and often do not remember the procedure at all. Only qualified dentists, licensed in the state of New York must perform sedation dentistry; they must have the appropriate training to ensure the complete safety of the patient. Please research your potential sedation dentist for proper credentials before you setup any type of consultations or sign any invoices.

In addition to relaxing the patient, sedation dentistry allows for dental work that would have ordinarily taken multiple visits to be completed with only one visit. This allows for the patient to avoid missing extra work or school and helps to ease their fears about having to repeat an unpleasant experience again and again.

Levels of Sedation:

  • Minimal sedation — you are awake but relaxed.
  • Moderate sedation (formerly called “conscious sedation”) — slurring of  your words when speaking and not remember much of the procedure most commonly occurs.
  • Deep sedation — the edge of consciousness but still considered awake in your alertness.
  • General anesthesia — complete unconsciousness.

Types of Sedation Administered in Dentistry:

  • Inhaled minimal sedation. Breathing nitrous oxide — known as “laughing gas” — combined with oxygen through a mask placed over your nose. The gas is what makes you relax and at ease. Each dentist decides and controls the amount of sedation you receive for each procedure. The gas typically wears off quickly. This is the only form of sedation where it may be possible  to drive yourself home after the procedure.
  • Oral sedation. For minimal sedation, you are prescribed a pill about one hour prior to the procedure, possibly something from the Valium family. This pill will increase your level of drowsiness, although you will still be awake. A larger dose may be given to produce moderate sedation. This is the type of anesthesia most commonly associated with sedation dentistry. Some people become groggy enough from moderate oral sedation to actually fall asleep during the procedure.
  • IV moderate sedation. You receive the sedative drug through a vein. This produces almost immediate effects to go to work quickly. You can adjust the levels of the sedation fairly easy through this method.
  • Deep sedation and general anesthesia. You will get medications that will make you either almost unconscious or totally unconscious — deep sleep — during the procedure. While you are under general anesthesia, you cannot easily be awakened until the effects of the anesthesia wear off or are reversed with medication.

Regardless of which type of sedation you receive, you’ll also typically need a local anesthetic — numbing medication at the site where the dentist is working in the mouth — to relieve pain if the procedure causes any discomfort.

Am I a Candidate for Sedation Dentistry?

If you are avoiding dental treatment out of fear and anxiety, sedation dentistry may be an option for you. People fear the dentist for various reasons: horrible past experiences (either your own or those of family or friends), fear of needles, or anxiety associated with potential pain. Sedation dentistry helps to alleviate your anxiety by putting you into a more relaxed state.

Sedation dentistry is not just for the anxious; it is also an option for patients in Staten Island, NY and other surrounding areas who cannot control their movements or reflexes because of a medical condition, such as Parkinson’s disease. Sedatives work to relax the muscles of the patient, keeping their movements under control while Dr. DiCicco or Dr. Intatano completes the dental procedure.

Let Sedation Dentistry Help You Face Your Dental Phobia

If a visit to the dentist makes you anxious, sedation dentistry may be an option for you. To see if you are a candidate for sedation dentistry at our Staten Island, New York office, contact Dr. DiCicco or Dr. Intatano at Staten Island Dental Group today.