While it is not uncommon for children to be scared to go to the dentist, there are plenty of people who aren't children who have a hard time going to the dentist. Maybe you have a hard time with pain, maybe the sound of a dental drill irks you, maybe you don't do well with high-stress situations—whatever your issues are with going to the dentist, not going is really not an option. Luckily, you should be able to find a dentist who practices sedation dentistry in your area.
What Is Sedation Dentistry?
The term sedation refers to putting someone under to help them cope with the pain of a surgery. While it is not uncommon for a dentist to use sedation, in the past, it was typically reserved for major surgeries, such as having your wisdom teeth pulled or having a dental implant installed. Today you can go to a dentist who practices sedation dentistry and be put under for all sorts of reasons such as stress reduction.
Is It Safe?
You might worry that being put under will cause problems. Dentists use nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, which is not a heavy narcotic. In fact, when administered in safe doses, laughing gas does not even make you lose consciousness. Instead, you just lose awareness of your surroundings. Dentists who use sedation dentistry are trained in how to use nitrous oxide safely, so the risks are minuscule.
What Can You Be Put Under for?
You do not have to wait until you are in serious pain or mental distress to ask to be put under. In fact, if even having your teeth examined makes you uneasy, you can be put under as soon as the dentist or hygienist starts working on your teeth. In other words, dentists who use sedation for normal dental exams are aware that there are people who put their dental health at risk simply by going too long between check ups and thus will do whatever they can to make your visit as pleasant as possible.
If you have a habit or have children who have a habit of avoiding the dentist, then it is time to look into sedation dentistry. You can go to the dentist, receive an exam, have any necessary work done, and all without hearing the dentist's drill, experiencing pain, or feeling anxiety. When you think of what is sedation dentistry, just think of pain and stress-free dentistry.