Sleep Dentistry (I.V. Sedation)
If you are nervous about having Dental Treatment, Sleep Dentistry may be just what you’re looking for…
Sleep Dentistry is a service offered at Corinna Dental to minimise the anxiety or fear that a person might otherwise experience when receiving dental treatment. We’ve found it to be a particularly good treatment option if a person has been avoiding needed dental care because of their severe dental fear or phobia.
Also known as “Intravenous Sedation”, this treatment induces a deep level of sedation for the duration of a dental appointment. It can be used for most types of appointments, including dental fillings, crown preparations and extractions.
Once the sedation has been administered, the patient becomes relaxed, drowsy and unconcerned about their treatment.
Sleep Dentistry provides a deeper level of sedation than Happy Gas but has fewer risks than a full General Anaesthetic.
Sleep Dentistry Is Also Called “IV Sedation” or “Intravenous Sedation”
While “Sleep Dentistry” describes how this procedure is experienced by patients, we prefer to call the procedure “Intravenous Sedation”, because this is more accurately describes the process of sedation.
The patient is welcomed into the treatment room, where our team of fully qualified and experienced professionals will be ready to receive them. They will be invited to sit in the chair, which will be reclined so that the patient is comfortable.
At the beginning of the appointment, a sedative medication will be introduced into the patient’s body intravenously, usually through a vein in the arm. The sedative induces a deeply relaxed state for the duration of the appointment. Unlike a General Anaesthetic, the patient remains conscious, able to move and to breathe on their own. They are able to respond to the dental team’s questions and instructions during their treatment.
It’s true that some patients enjoy a nap during their appointment as a result of the deep relaxation they experience. But even though not every patient sleeps, the term “Sleep Dentistry” is widely used. The sedative medications can cause an amnesia, preventing patients from being able to recall anything about their appointment. Thus, most feel that they have been either asleep or unconscious during their appointments.
Once the treatment has been completed, the patient will be asked to remain resting in the practice until the sedation starts to wear off. Even then, the patient will still be drowsy and unable to drive or to make their way home alone. A patient receiving intravenous sedation will need to be accompanied home by an adult who will be able to remain with them for the several hours it takes for the sedation to completely wear off.
Can Anyone Have Sleep Dentistry?
It is suitable for most patients. However, before you undergo this procedure, your dentist will need to review your medical history and current health status to ensure that the treatment is right for you.
Like all invasive procedures, any form of sedation carries risks. These will be explained to you before your treatment appointment, and you’ll be encouraged to ask all the questions you need to ensure that you understand the nature of these risks and are willing to undergo treatment. If your dentist is concerned about your health and perceives an unacceptable level of risk, a specialist anaesthetist may need to be consulted to ensure you receive the best care for your circumstances and health status.
Who Provides Sleep Dentistry At Corinna Dental?
To be able to provide this type of dental sedation within a non-hospital setting, the attending dentist must be additionally qualified, as this area of dentistry is not taught to dental undergraduates.
Our Principal Dentist, Dr Chris Hardwicke, has completed the appropriate post-graduate training: Dip.Clin.Dent – Diploma in Clinical Dentistry – Pain Management & Sedation – Sydney.
Dr Chris has many years of experience providing Intravenous Sedation to Canberra patients and is supported by a team of highly experienced dental assistants and nursing professionals within our Woden rooms. He is a gentle and caring practitioner, well-skilled in supporting nervous patients to receive the dental care they need.
Your Next Steps
To find out more about Sleep Dentistry for yourself or a loved one or to make an appointment, please call our Woden rooms on 6282 2605.
If you’d prefer to make contact by email, navigate to our Contact Page and send us a message to request a callback, or send a message through our Facebook page.