Sedation Dentistry: Definition And Features
General anesthesia and sedation are alternatives that can very often support dental practice. It is highly important to know these basic concepts about this area is of fundamental importance throughout the formation of the Dentist since in more than one opportunity you will be faced with a person who can only be treated under general anesthesia or sedation.
Sedation could be defined as a condition generated by a dope while the person presents a variation in his/her state of mind, it can go from a variation to a slight slump according to what its needed, meanwhile, the sick person is sleepy but responds to orders, conserving some of its senses awake. Sometimes due to the intensity slump affects deeply his/her state of mind, and the person does not respond even to painful stimuli. Protective reflexes may or may not be present, depending on whether its superficial sedation, also called conscious sedation, or whether it’s a deeper type of sedation.
There is virtually no difference between deep sedation and superficial general anesthesia.
What is conscious sedation?
It is a method that facilitates the patient’s relaxation and allows for more comfortable and effective treatments. It is indicated for people who are afraid of all these type of procedures or who feel a high level of stress when they have to visit a dental office.
In this type as its name indicates, the patient remains aware during the entire treatment. Thanks to it, you’re feeling in the dental chair will be one of well-being and tranquility.
One of the main barriers to going to a dentist is fear, which is why a simple cleaning or check-up for people who suffer from dental phobia involves a high level of anxiety and stress and therefore patients tend to postpone these visits, causing diseases such as periodontitis or caries to appear in themselves over time.
Therefore, conscious sedation in dentistry allows a state of relaxation and tranquility for the patient, but also has other advantages:
- Reduction of the patient’s anxiety.
- Greater safety in dental surgery.
- Easier to carry out treatments in a single session.
- Better recovery and post-surgery.
Types of sedation in dentistry
In addition to conscious sedation, there are other ways to achieve patient well-being and relaxation in the dental office. These are the most commonly used:
Intravenous sedation: tranquilizers are administered intravenously which relaxes the central nervous system and therefore the patient.
Deep sedation: This is used to bring to a controlled state of depression of consciousness. This is riskier than the other, as it affects all your senses.
Minimal sedation: is used for less invasive treatments. The patient responds normally to the stimuli and is conscious at all times.
Combined sedation: sedative dope is administered by the enteral and inhalation route.
Symptoms of sedation in dentistry
The use of this method in dental offices is becoming progressively popular. However, it still generates so much doubts regarding its symptoms. After a treatment in which conscious sedation has been administered, the patient will need a few hours to recover and return completely to a normal state.
Common symptoms include decreased reflexes and numbness. It is recommended that the person go with somebody to the clinic, who can help him/her for about four to six hours after the attention when the effects will have completely disappeared.
Medications utilized for sedation in dentistry
To achieve a state of total relaxation and well-being, a single medication or a combination of these can be utilised. Depending on the duration of the treatment, the characteristics of the person, and his or her level of stress, and also considering the dope that was used.
However, if it is a case of conscious sedation in dentistry, Triazolam, a benzodiazepine, is usually used. Its effect begins 15 minutes after application and its peak of effectiveness appear after 60 minutes. This medicates generates antegrade amnesia. During the antegrade the person does not remember what happens before the intervention.
Other medicines used for this method in the dental surgery are Lorazepam, Diazepam or Midazolam, as well as Propofol, the most widely used anesthetic currently given intravenously.