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Sedation Dentistry – San Antonio, TX

Helping You Curb Anxiety
During Your Next Treatment

While people have many reasons for why they don’t visit the dentist, anxiety and fear are actually some of the leading ones. While we do everything possible to create a warm and welcoming environment, Dr. Brice understands that poor experiences with previous dentists can ruin every future visit, especially if they occurred at a young age. With three different levels of sedation available, you don’t have to sacrifice your oral health simply because of fear. Contact our office to learn which strength of sedation can most benefit your next appointment!

Why Choose Brice Dental for Sedation Dentistry?

  • Nitrous Oxide for Fast-Acting Relief
  • Oral Conscious for Moderate Anxiety
  • Strong IV Sedation Available In-House

Oral Conscious Sedation

Patient taking oral conscious sedative pill

If you have moderate levels of fear or anxiety when it comes to visiting the dentist, oral conscious sedatives might be the best option to make you feel comfortable. This sedative is taken orally prior to your appointment, making you ready to receive treatment by the time you arrive. You’ll still be awake to tell the dentist about your comfort levels, but we ask that you have a friend or family member drive you to and from the practice for your own safety.

Nitrous Oxide Sedation

Patient with nitrous oxide dental sedation mask

For those with more mild levels of anxiety, nitrous oxide is incredibly fast-acting, making it ideal for those who want to feel the relaxing effects of dental sedatives as soon as they begin their appointment. The gaseous substance is inhaled through a nasal mask throughout treatment and controlled via the dentist. During your visit, you’ll not only be able to communicate with our team, but remove the effects as soon as treatment is complete. This makes it easy to continue your day and even drive afterwards!

IV Sedation

Man receiving IV sedation dentistry

For those with severe levels of anxiety or fear that make it very difficult to get treatment completed, IV sedation can be provided entirely in-house. Keep in mind that while this method of sedation is the strongest available in dentistry (and some patients do fall asleep after receiving it), it is not designed to put you to sleep like general anesthesia. You’ll still be able to speak with the dentist directly, receive instructions, and inform us of your comfort levels so we can make on-the-fly adjustments as needed.

Sedation Dentistry FAQs

Questions and answers about sedation dentistry

Whether your palms sweat when it's time to visit the dentist, or you need a lengthy procedure, sedation dentistry can help you sit back and relax. However, it's not unusual to have a few concerns about the service. Your sedation dentist in San Antonio, Dr. Brice, will explain everything during your consultation to ease any apprehensions. While you wait for your appointment, here are the answers to the most frequently asked questions to calm your nerves.

Is Sedation Dentistry Safe?

If you're a candidate for sedation dentistry, it is safe when administered by a trained dental professional, like Dr. Brice. Dental sedation is safe for most patients with good health. Dr. Brice will learn more about your medical history and any medications you're taking to look for anything concerning. He will choose the safest sedative for your needs. Generally, nitrous oxide is the safest for children and adults.

Will I Remember Anything with Dental Sedation?

Each sedative causes a different experience while in the dentist’s chair. You're more likely to remember your procedure if nitrous oxide is used, but it's not unusual for your memory to be fragmented with oral conscious sedation. You will probably have little or no memory of your appointment if IV sedation is used.

What Does It Feel Like to Be Sedated At the Dentist?

It depends on the type of sedative used, but here's what you can expect with the most popular options:

  • Nitrous Oxide: Better known as "laughing gas," it may make your extremities tingle or your body may feel heavy. Your anxiety will fade away, and you may even get a slight case of the giggles. As soon as the mask is removed, the effects dissipate quickly. You can even drive yourself home.
  • Oral Conscious:Oral conscious sedation is a bit stronger than nitrous oxide. It's a prescribed medication taken before your procedure. As it takes effect, you will reach deep relaxation and may even doze off. You'll remain conscious and can be awakened to respond to your dentist's instructions or at the slightest touch. It can take a few hours for the effects to dissipate, so you'll need to take it easy for the rest of the day.
  • IV Sedation: IV sedation kicks in quickly. You'll sleep through your appointment and it will seem like time went by in the blink of an eye. It can take a few hours for it to wear off, so you'll need someone to drive you home and plan to spend the day resting.

Will I Feel Any Pain with Dental Sedation?

Dr. Brice can use a local numbing agent along with a sedative if necessary. You won't have any pain during your treatment, but depending on the procedure, your mouth may be tender after the numbing medication wears off. You can manage it with an over-the-counter pain reliever and applying a cold compress. Dr. Brice may have additional aftercare instructions, like eating soft foods. Dr. Brice will keep your comfort as his top priority, so you don't have to worry about a painful day in the dentist’s chair.