Types of dental sedation

Oral sedation: A common oral sedative is Temazepam, a family of medicines that is used to help a person to sleep (hypnotic). They also have the effect of reducing anxiety. This can be taken the night before your appointment in order for you to have an undisturbed night’s sleep and also an hour before the treatment begins. As this sedative makes a person drowsy, a responsible adult must accompany a patient to act as a chaperone. This method of sedation is very useful in that the method of administration is simple (taking a tablet), however, the level of sedation is difficult to predict and control, as it depends on the rate at which the individual metabolises the medicine.

Inhalation sedation: This is also known as “gas and air”. It is a mixture of nitrous oxide (laughing gas) and oxygen. You breathe it in through a mask that is placed over your nose. When your treatment is finished, the sedative will wear off after a few deep breaths and the gases leave your body quickly.

Intravenous sedation: If you have this sort of sedation, a sedative drug will be injected through a fine plastic tube (cannula) into a vein, usually on the back of your hand. This type of sedation is very effective. You will need somebody to take you home afterwards and you will not be able to drive or go to work until the following day. You probably will not remember the procedure.

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