Nitrous Oxide Sedation
In this technique, you breathe nitrous oxide gas mixed with oxygen through a small mask on your nose in a fail-safe system that never allows the amount of oxygen to go below a safe level. Monitoring is done throughout the procedure to ensure this remains the case. The sedation effect mostly wears off by the end of the procedure. Nevertheless it is important to have a ride home after the procedure.
Oral Conscious Sedation
In this technique, your dentist or oral surgeon would prescribe a sedative medication to be taken just prior to your visit. The specific medication chosen would be the result of a thoughtful discussion between you and your dentist or oral surgeon taking your medical history and sedation needs into account. In some cases, nitrous oxide sedation, as above, is used in combination with the oral sedation. Monitoring is maintained throughout. The sedation effect of the oral sedation medication usually lasts for some period of time after the procedure, so it is required to have a ride to and form the office with an adult escort you arrange.
Intravenous (“IV”) Sedation
In this technique used by our oral surgeons for procedures such as extractions and the removal of impacted “wisdom teeth,” your oral surgeon would administer a sedation medication intravenously through an intravenous line. We commonly use Versed (generic name midazolam). Nitrous oxide is usually used in combination. That combination allows lower doses of the intravenous medication to produce a desired sedative effect than would be possible if the intravenous medication were used alone. Using the lowest dose of a sedation medication possible to produce comfortable sedation is, in our opinion, a safety advantage. Monitoring is maintained throughout. The sedation effect from intravenous sedation usually lasts for some period of time after the visit, often as long as 24 hours and sometimes a bit more. It is required for you to have an escort, whom you have arranged, arrive with you for the appointment and take you home after a period of monitored recovery in the office. It is also very important for you to have nothing to eat or drink for at least six hours before an intravenous sedation.