Is fear or anxiety keeping you out of the dental chair? An estimated 50 to 80 percent of U.S. adults have some level of dental anxiety. But sedation dentistry can help you relax, remain calm throughout your appointment, and have productive dental visits. At Vista Dental in Vancouver, Washington, we offer affordable sedation dentistry options. And we have observed that anxiety levels decrease over time for many of our sedation patients. Sedation provides a safe, effective way to help you get the dental care you need to achieve the healthy, beautiful smile you have always wanted.
What Is Sedation Dentistry?
Sedation dentistry is a safe way of using commonly prescribed anti-anxiety medication to help you relax during dental procedures. Sedation based on your anxiety level and the length and complexity of the dental treatment is an effective way to give you consistently positive dental experiences.
Even if you do not have dental anxiety, your relaxed state will make your dental visits more productive than usual. So, Dr. Saleh can complete more dental work than otherwise in one appointment. And that can save you time and result in fewer dental visits.
Sedation Dentistry Levels
At Vista Dental, Dr. Mo Saleh is certified in sedation dentistry. We offer mild, moderate, and deep sedation, depending on your anxiety level. As he carefully listens as you describe your dental anxiety and triggers, Dr. Saleh uses a questionnaire to assess your anxiety level and select a type of sedation to match it. He will keep you completely comfortable throughout your entire visit.
Nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, is the mildest level of sedation.
What can you expect with nitrous oxide?
- Just before and during your dental procedure, we will give you nitrous oxide to breathe in.
- You will be awake but relaxed with a sense of well-being and calmness.
- After your dental procedure, you will stop breathing in nitrous oxide.
- We give you pure oxygen to breathe in and reverse the sedative effects of nitrous oxide quickly.
- You will be able to drive immediately after the appointment.
Oral conscious sedation
Oral conscious sedation is a moderate level of sedation achieved by commonly prescribed anti-anxiety medication in pill form. It will make you drowsy, so arrange for transportation to and from your dental appointment.
- We will give you medication to take the night before your dental appointment so you can get a good night’s rest.
- About an hour before your appointment, you will take medication to help you arrive at our office relaxed.
- During your appointment, we will ensure that a staff member is always with you.
- You will be conscious and able to answer questions and respond to instructions.
- Drowsiness will linger after your appointment, so you will need to relax for the rest of the day.
- You probably will not remember the sights and sounds of your dental procedure.
IV (intravenous) sedation is a fast-acting, deep level of sedation delivered through an IV. You will quickly become drowsy. However, unlike general anesthesia, you will still be conscious. This level of sedation is beneficial for high levels of anxiety and lengthy dental procedures. You will have little or no memory of your dental treatment.
Some patients with extreme anxiety or special needs cannot tolerate dental treatment. We partner with a board-certified anesthesiologist to administer general anesthesia so that you or your loved one can maintain good oral health. Our close teamwork with the anesthesiologist provides safe, compassionate care and successful dental treatment.
How Much Does Sedation Dentistry Cost?
The cost of sedation dentistry depends on the sedation type and how much is needed to complete your procedure. At Vista Dental, our below-average fees make all dental treatments more affordable and accessible for our patients. Your treatment estimate will include sedation fees if you choose this option.
Does Dental Insurance Cover Sedation?
If you have dental insurance, contact your insurance company to ask if they provide any benefits toward sedation dentistry. Some insurance plans offer limited coverage. You can file a claim for reimbursement after your procedure at Vista Dental. Also, if you have a health savings account (HAS) through your employer, sedation dentistry may be a qualifying expense.
Affordable Sedation Dentistry Tailored for Your Comfort
Many patients’ dental anxiety results from negative dental experiences in the past. At Vista Dental in Vancouver, Washington, we consider your specific needs to ensure your comfort. We will listen to your verbal and non-verbal communication during your dental procedure to understand which actions or words might contribute to your anxiety. We attentively avoid your anxiety triggers and tailor your treatment accordingly.
One of our patients shared her experience:
“My family has been going to Dr. Saleh for over a decade. I have been an especially difficult patient, and I require a lot of hand-holding as well as sedation. Even though we live in Hillsboro, Oregon—almost an hour from Vancouver—it never occurred to us to go anywhere else.” – Katie P.