General anesthesia is provided in the office by pediatric anesthesiologists from Children's Dental Anesthesia Group and also at the ValleyCare Day Surgery Center.
Click here to learn more about the Children's Anesthesia Group, based out of Children's Hospital of Oakland.
We recognize that some of our patients may feel anxious or apprehensive about receiving dental care. Our doctors and staff work hard to make sure that you have a comfortable, positive experience, and that's why we are pleased to offer sedation dentistry for those patients needing a little extra comfort before receiving treatment. Feeling anxious about receiving dental care should never prevent you from having the beautiful, healthy smile you deserve.
Oral sedation dentistry that is safe and effective
There are different types of sedation dentistry, and you and your doctor will work together to decide on a personalized treatment plan that will give you the care you need while ensuring your comfort every step of the way.
How sedation dentistry works
About an hour before you begin your dental treatment, you will be given a small pill to help you relax. Due to the sedative nature of the pill, you will need someone to accompany you to your appointment because you will not be able to drive. When you arrive at our practice, our staff will be waiting for you and will escort you to a private room where you'll be treated.
Your doctor will gently place an IV and administer medication to help you into a deeper state of relaxation. Once your treatment is complete, you will wake up with little or no memory of the appointment and a beautiful new smile. Using sedation dentistry, we may be able to complete many different procedures, including complex smile makeovers, in just one office visit.
Common questions about sedation dentistry
We understand that you may have many questions about sedation dentistry before receiving treatment. Here are some of the most common questions and answers about sedation dentistry:
- Will I feel anything during my treatment?
In most cases, patients do not feel anything. There is very little discomfort, and many patients wake up feeling relaxed and comfortable with almost no memory of the treatment.
- Is sedation dentistry the same as being unconscious?
No. You will still be conscious and responsive but you will be in a deep state of relaxation.
- Is sedation dentistry safe?
Sedation dentistry is a safe and effective way for many patients to receive dental treatment. Before starting your treatment with IV sedation, your doctor will help you decide if IV sedation is right for your treatment.
- How long will it take the sedation to wear off?
The time it takes for the sedatives to wear off depends on the dose you've received, how long your treatment is, and how quickly your own body can recover. Because sedation causes drowsiness, it is recommended that you have a family member or friend drive you to and from your appointment. After your treatment, you should not drive, drink alcohol, or operate machinery.
- Am I a good candidate for sedation dentistry?
Any patient, from child to adult, who experiences dental anxiety is a good candidate for sedation dentistry. If you have any of the following fears or concerns, ask your doctor about sedation dentistry as an option for your next dental treatment:
- 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 for a more complex dental treatment
- Self-consciousness about one's teeth
- Desire for a more comfortable dental treatment
If you feel that you could benefit from sedation dentistry at your next appointment, please contact us and let us know how we can better accommodate your needs.
After treatment, the nitrous is turned off and oxygen is administered for five to 10 minutes to help flush any remaining gas. The effects wear off almost immediately. Nitrous oxide rarely has side effects, although some patients may experience minor nausea and constipation. Your pediatric dentist will provide you with pre-and post-sedation instructions.