Patients in the area of Knoxville, TN who are faced with dental fears are not alone. Many patients have dental anxiety and may find it difficult to attend necessary appointments because of these deep-seated feelings. However, our dentists at Cornerstone Dental Arts, including Drs. Joe Griffin, Joshua Kimrey, Ben Stroud, and Michael Williams, are here to help with sedation dentistry solutions. A popular option for our patients with moderate to severe dental anxiety is IV sedation.
What is dental anxiety?
Millions of Americans deal with dental anxiety, and it’s much more common than patients realize. There are many reasons why a patient might have dental anxiety. Perhaps they have had a negative experience in the past with a previous dental professional. Maybe they are scared of pain and discomfort. Other patients experience anxiety the minute they step into the practice or hear the dental drills. Whatever the reasons, the team at Cornerstone Dental Arts encourages patients who have dental anxieties to speak up to their dental providers. This allows us to make recommendations that can ease fears, such as administering sedation via IV.
What is IV sedation?
IV sedation, sometimes referred to as “sleep dentistry,” is a wonderful option for patients who have upcoming dental work but have anxiety about visiting the dentist’s chair. This is an intravenous sedation that administers a sedative directly into the blood for fast and effective sedation effects. Patients will typically fall asleep during their procedure, allowing the dentist to complete the work while patients are unaware and comfortable. Other patients may be sedated to the level that they are not fully asleep but in a sedated state of consciousness. After the procedure, most patients have no recollection of what occurred. IV sedation is best for patients with severe anxieties. However, it may also be used in patients who have conditions that can make it difficult to stay still or follow instructions in the dental chair.
Is IV sedation safe?
IV sedation is administered and monitored by a dental professional who has certification and experience in IV sedation. The medication itself is completely safe to use on patients and is dosed based on the patient’s weight and the effectiveness of the medication on the individual. Our team monitors patients’ vitals throughout sedation to make sure the appropriate dose is being used and the treatment is effective and safe.
Who can be helped with IV sedation?
IV sedation can be used on patients of all ages and anxiety levels, though it is often utilized for more severely anxious patients. Other levels of sedation may be used for mild anxieties, and patients are welcome to ask about the different methods of sedation to find out which one may be best for their specific concerns. We encourage patients to speak up to our team if they experience dental anxiety either before or during their visit.
How does IV sedation help with dental fears?
When patients know that they are undergoing IV sedation before their dental procedure is performed, they are often much more at ease even when they arrive at the dental office. By using sedation in this manner, patients can address and face their fears, knowing that they will be comfortable in the dental chair and under the treatment of the staff they know and trust with their oral health and wellness.
Can I drive myself to my appointment if I am undergoing IV sedation?
Because IV sedation can take some time to reverse after the procedure is done, patients are urged to arrange transportation to and from the office. This is for their safety, as some patients feel groggy for several hours after their procedure. We recommend having someone they know and trust to transport them to and from their visit and to stay with them for part of the day following treatment.
How do I prepare myself for a dental visit with IV sedation?
There may be a few things that need to be done to prepare for a visit using IV sedation. First, patients should arrange their transportation to and from the dental office. Second, patients should not schedule any other activities for the remainder of the day and should have someone stay with them afterward. Third, patients should not eat or drink anything for at least eight hours prior to their visit. Fourth, the patient will be educated by the dental team on post-operative instructions and medications before undergoing sedation, so that this information can be shared with the individual transporting them.
Eliminate fear and anxiety from your dental visits
Ask our team of professionals about the benefits of using IV sedation to ensure a positive experience in the dental chair with Drs. Joe Griffin, Joshua Kimrey, Ben Stroud, and Michael Williams. At Cornerstone Dental Arts, we can incorporate sedation into invasive or lengthy treatments to ensure patient comfort throughout the process. Call (865) 531-7117 to schedule an appointment with our friendly front office team, or feel free to visit our facility at 8912 Town and Country Circle, Suite #1 in Knoxville, TN.