Sedation Dentistry – Goodyear, AZ

We Specialize in Managing Dental Phobia

Relaxing dental patient at sedation dentistry visit

Sedation or “Twilight Dentistry” is a technique where clients are given medication that puts them in a sleepy but conscious state and numbs their senses in the mouth, so they experience a pain-free dental procedure. Clients find themselves in a ‘twilight state’ wherein they feel sleepy but are conscious, can follow simple instructions and can respond to the dentist. Most clients don’t remember the procedure or have any memory of the events immediately afterwards, thus contributing to the name ‘memory-free’ dentistry. Keep reading to learn more about options for sedation dentistry in our Goodyear, AZ dental office.

Why Choose Joshua Hong DDS for Sedation Dentistry?

  • Fast-Acting Nitrous Oxide Available
  • Convenient, Powerful Oral Conscious Sedation
  • IV Sedation for the Most Severe Dental Phobia Cases

Oral Conscious Dental Sedation

Dental patient taking oral conscious dental sedation pill

Through the use of prescribed medications, oral conscious sedation works to address moderate to severe levels of anxiety that may be felt during dental appointments. Ideally, these sedatives are taken at least one hour before an appointment to ensure you are properly sedated enough to undergo your upcoming treatment comfortably. Since the effects are generally more noticeable than other sedation options, you will need to have a friend or family member drive you home to and from the smile studio for your safety.

Nitrous Oxide Sedation

Patient receiving nitrous oxide dental sedation treatment

Do you tend to feel anxious when it comes to undergoing dental treatment? Do you often struggle to relax while sitting in the dentist’s chair? If so, then nitrous oxide sedation may be the ideal solution for you. This option is typically referred to as “laughing gas” due to the level of comfort it provides for patients. It’s also the mildest and gentlest form of sedation, making it well-suited for a wide range of patients of all ages and the most popular choice. Nitrous oxide sedation is also completely safe, easy to use, and won’t involve any long-lasting effects.

Who Is a Good Candidate for Nitrous Oxide?

a woman worried about nitrous oxide in Goodyear

Our team will be more than happy to discuss your eligibility if you’re interested in undergoing nitrous oxide sedation. We will usually recommend this method for patients who:

  • Experience back, neck, shoulder, or leg pain from sitting in the examination chair
  • Feel nervous, anxious, or afraid about their upcoming treatment or appointment
  • Have difficulty sitting still for prolonged periods or keeping their mouth open
  • Have a powerful gag reflex or sensitive teeth that make dental treatments uncomfortable

Although nitrous oxide is a great choice for many patients, it isn’t for everyone. We will have to first thoroughly review your overall health and medical history to confirm that you’re safe to receive nitrous oxide. We typically won’t recommend it to patients who have high blood pressure, have glaucoma, are pregnant, are experiencing nasal congestion, and several other conditions. Once we’ve considered these factors, we’ll determine if nitrous oxide is right for you.

How Does Nitrous Oxide Work?

a patient undergoing nitrous oxide in Goodyear

Also known as “laughing gas”, nitrous oxide sedation requires you to inhale a gaseous sedative made from nitrous oxide and oxygen. This is done through a nasal mask that is worn throughout the entire treatment process. As you gently inhale the sedative, it will help you relax almost instantly and Dr. Hong can continuously monitor the level of the sedative being administered. While you’ll still be conscious during your procedure, you may be oblivious to the sounds, sights, and sensations that could lead to physical or emotional discomfort. The effect of the gas wears off quickly after the procedure is completed, allowing you to get back to your regular activities almost instantly.

Aftercare for Nitrous Oxide

a patient smiling after nitrous oxide in Goodyear

One of the best things about nitrous oxide sedation is that you won’t have to worry about experiencing a lengthy recovery time. Other sedatives can cause you to feel groggy for several hours after you’ve left your appointment, meaning you’ll have to plan for someone to drive you to and from your visit. On the other hand, once your dentist has removed your nasal mask and you’re no longer receiving nitrous oxide, you can quickly return to normal levels of consciousness after just a few minutes. This means you can easily drive yourself home and carry on the rest of your day without any worries. In rare cases, patients may feel nauseous from nitrous oxide sedation, but most experience zero immediate or long-term side effects.

IV Dental Sedation

I V dental sedation drip

IV stands for “intravenous”, meaning the sedative is administered through the vein directly into the bloodstream. As a result, the effect of the sedative can be observed almost immediately, allowing Dr. Hong’s board-certified anesthesiologist to control the amount of sedative being administered throughout the entire procedure. Once the treatment is complete, you can expect the sedative to take at least 12 hours to wear off completely. This means you’ll need a ride to and from our smile studio to ensure you are safe after your appointment.

Sedation Dentistry FAQs

Above, we’ve covered some important information, including the types of sedation dentistry we offer and an overview of how they work. However, if you still have a few questions on your mind, that’s completely okay! To learn more on the topic, you’re welcome to reach out to our Goodyear dental team directly or keep reading.

Will I remember anything with dental sedation? 

Many patients who struggle with dental-related anxiety don’t want to remember anything about being in the treatment chair. The good news is that more powerful sedation options, like IV sedation and oral conscious sedation, often have an anterograde amnesia effect. Even with nitrous oxide, you may feel like time is going faster than it actually is, resulting in you forgetting some of the details. Not only does this ensure that you have an anxiety-free visit, but it will also help you have a more positive association with dentistry moving forward!

Does dental sedation make you tell secrets? 

There’s a common misconception that you’ll end up saying things that you normally wouldn’t in an incredibly relaxed state. However, sedation dentistry isn’t a “truth serum;” it’s very unlikely that you’ll reveal any deep secrets because of its effects. Plus, on the off-chance that you do say something unusual, you don’t have to worry – it won’t leave the walls of the treatment room.

Is sedation dentistry worth it?

Since dental insurance doesn’t always cover sedation dentistry, you might be wondering if it’s really worth the investment. If you struggle with dental-related anxiety, dental sensitivity, a strong gag reflex, discomfort in the treatment chair, or something similar, then the answer is a resounding “yes!” After all, nitrous oxide sedation, oral conscious sedation, and IV sedation can put you in a calm, relaxed state, effectively alleviating any stress you normally feel surrounding having dental work done.

What does it feel like to be sedated at the dentist? 

The sensation of being sedated is a bit different depending on the type you choose. Since nitrous oxide is the most mild, you’ll feel light, relaxed, and completely at ease. With oral conscious sedation, you’ll experience an even deeper state of calm. In fact, you may even doze off because you’re so comfortable! Then, there is IV sedation, which amplifies the feelings of oral conscious sedation (that is one of the many reasons patients with severe dental-related anxiety choose it).

Is sedation dentistry safe? 

For most patients, sedation dentistry is perfectly safe. As with any dental service, however, there are some people that aren’t good candidates. For example, if you have a condition that makes it difficult to breathe, then nitrous oxide isn’t a good fit for you. Similarly, if one of your current medications has the potential to result in complications, then we will find another way to help you feel calm and comfortable in the treatment chair.