Intravenous (IV) sedation, or general anesthesia, lets you rest comfortably during your procedure. We fine-tune your dosage based on the intensity of your discomfort or anxiety; you may fall completely asleep or simply feel very relaxed and sleepy depending on the dosage you receive. Most patients stay conscious and are able to talk with their surgeon, but feel no discomfort and often have little memory of their procedure afterward.
What does General Anesthesia Entail?
Your safety is always our top concern. We’ll ask you to fast from food and drink for eight hours prior to your procedure unless your surgeon has prescribed medications to be taken during that time.
We will monitor your heart rate, blood pressure, and breathing closely during your procedure.
When we’ve finished the procedure, the IV is stopped and you will rest for 15 to 20 minutes before being discharged.
Pain medication, if necessary, will be prescribed after your visit.
If you opt for general anesthesia, we require you to have someone accompany you to your appointment that will drive you home. We also recommend that they stay with you until the effect of the anesthesia has completely worn off.
Once you no longer feel drowsy you can resume your normal activities.
When We Use General Anesthesia
Our surgeons will use general anesthesia most commonly for lengthy procedures and oral surgeries, like dental implant surgery. However, for some people, it can be a great benefit regardless of the type of procedure they are undergoing. General anesthesia is especially helpful if you:
Have severe anxiety related to dental work.
Have phobias associated with needles and drills.
Have a strong gag reflex.
You have TMJ or another neuromuscular disorder that makes it difficult for you to keep your mouths open for a long period of time.
When talking with patients about comfort measures, we consider their present health conditions, medical history, and anxiety level. General Anesthesia isn’t safe for everyone, but it can make your dental procedure much more pleasant.
If you have a fear of visiting the dentist, you’re not alone. We talk with many patients whose fears were relieved by the use of appropriate and safe comfort measures.