West Vancouver Sedation Dentistry
If you are considering IV sedation or general anesthesia for your next dental treatment, chances are you have some lingering questions about what you should expect. We have done our best to answer the most frequently asked questions below, although we invite you to call or email our office if you have further concerns not addressed.
What are the benefits of IV sedation and general anesthesia?
Sedation and anesthesia are useful for a number of purposes. Specifically, complex procedures are shortened to a single appointment, as opposed to multiple procedures that are inconvenient and uncomfortable for the patient. Furthermore, sedation and anesthesia can help improve treatment efficacy in children and patients with special needs, and it can also help relieve worries among patients with previously negative dental experiences.
Is sedation or anesthesia necessary for all patients and procedures?
No. In fact, the majority of dental procedures are performed using local anesthetic for pain management. Also, some patients may exhibit certain health factors that prevent the safe administration of general anesthesia.
Is sedation and anesthesia safe?
Absolutely – for patients deemed healthy enough for anesthesia or sedation. You are in good hands with an experienced dental anesthesiologist with many years of training. All of your vital signs are carefully monitored for the duration of your treatment. However, you will be given a set of strict instructions for use prior to and following your procedure. Adhering to these rules is paramount to ensuring a safe sedation or anesthesia experience.
My child will be undergoing anesthesia. Is there anything I should know?
Yes. In addition to carefully following the pre-anesthetic instructions provided to you prior to your appointment, it is important that you explain to your child what he or she should expect on the day of the procedure. You will set the tone for your child’s experience, so be sure to appear level-headed and confident – not anxious or frightened. Also, help your child feel secure by allowing him or her to bring a favorite toy or stuffed animal to the appointment.
What should I expect upon arriving for my procedure?
You may have paperwork to complete the day of your surgery. We ask that you arrive at least a half hour prior to your appointment. You will be asked about changes to your health since your pre-operative evaluation. So long as you are in good health and you followed all pre-operative instructions, the procedure will proceed as scheduled. You will not be allowed to operate a vehicle following your surgery, so you will need to arrange for someone to drive you to and from your appointment.
Is a breathing tube necessary for my procedure?
We are unable to determine whether you will need a breathing tube while under general anesthesia, as that decision is made on a patient-to-patient basis. In many cases, breathing tubes are not necessary, as dental anesthesia allows for the continuation of intermittent patient breathing.
What will happen after I wake up?
You will be released into the care of a responsible adult driver. You may have little or no memory of your experience and quite possibly will sleep much of the day. Rest is important when recovering from anesthesia, so try to arrange for assistance from a family member or other responsible adult for the first 24 hours after your surgery.