Sedation dentistry is one of the most useful tools Dr. Firas Salhi and Dr. Russell Bird have to help our patients to overcome moderate to severe dental anxiety. It allows patients to undergo procedures, from simple teeth cleanings to full-mouth restoration, in a completely stress-free environment. It is also beneficial to patients who have very little anxiety but have a very difficult time getting numb.
There are many reasons why our patients choose sedation dentistry at our Portland, OR dental office:
- Extreme dental anxiety, or fear of visiting the dentist
- Fear of needles and/or shots
- Past traumatic dental experience
- Inability to handle the smells or noises at a dentist's office
- Overly sensitive teeth, a strong gag reflex, or trouble getting numb
- Need of complicated dental treatment
- Self-consciousness about one's teeth
- Desire for a more comfortable dental treatment
Types of Sedation at Columbia Square Dental
Nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, is the most frequently used method for easing mild to moderate anxiety at our Portland dental office. Administered through a small mask that fits over your nose, it is an effective way to calm anxiety, raise your pain threshold, and even make time seem like it's passing quicker than usual. As the gas begins to work, you will become calm, although you will still be awake and able to talk with Drs. Salhi and Bird.
At the end of your appointment, you'll resume breathing regular oxygen, and all the effects of nitrous oxide will disappear, so you can resume your normal activities immediately.
In some cases, a prescription anti-anxiety medication is given prior to the appointment to help overcome the fear of the IV needle. Nitrous oxide may also be used prior to inserting the IV. Dr. Bird will gently place an IV and administer medication to help you into a relaxed, sedated state. Once your treatment is complete, you will wake up with little or no memory of the appointment and a beautiful new smile.
IV sedation dentistry at Columbia Square Dental is completely safe. Dr. Bird has extensive experience and training in IV sedation, emergency management, pharmacology, and patient monitoring. In fact, we use the latest technology in respiration monitoring called capnography to maintain the highest level of safety possible.
Levels of IV Sedation
- Conscious Sedation — With conscious sedation, you will remain awake and responsive throughout your procedure, but will be in a deep state of relaxation.
- Deep Sedation — With deep sedation, you drift between consciousness and unconsciousness during your dental procedure. You will have no recollection of the treatment and will be unable to respond to commands even if you are awake at times during the procedure.
Preparing for IV Sedation
Do not eat anything six hours prior to dental appointment. Clear liquids can be ingested up to two hours prior to appointment, but after that, only a sip of water is permitted to take regularly scheduled medications. You will need someone to drive you to and from the appointment, and stay with you for four to six hours after the procedure.
During your sedation consultation, Dr. Bird will go over pre- and post-treatment instructions, and answer any additional questions you may have.