Our office can provide sedation for the nervous patient using either oral sedation (pill), nitrous oxide (commonly called laughing gas), or a combination of the two.
Oral sedation involves taking a pill one hour before your appointment in our office. During that hour, the pill will take effect and the patient will feel more relaxed and calm. Once the dental procedure is completed, the patient must be accompanied home by a family member or friend, and the pill will wear off after a short period of time.
Nitrous oxide (laughing gas) involves inhaling a sedative gas through a small mask over the nose during the appointment. The gas creates a relaxation effect and can calm an anxious patient down. Oxygen is then given at the end of the dental appointment to flush the laughing gas out of the system and the patient returns back to normal.
In some instances, a very nervous patient can be sedated with a combination of both a pill before the appointment, and laughing gas during the appointment.
With either method, the goal is to provide conscious sedation. This is where the patient is awake throughout the procedure and can still respond to questions; however, the sedative produces a sense of relaxation which allows the patient to overcome any anxiety they may have.