What to Expect from Dental Sedation
During your initial consultation to discuss your overall treatment needs and plan, your dentist will take the time to listen to any fears or anxieties you have, including what works (and doesn’t work) for you in terms of receiving dental care or carrying comfortably through dental visits and procedures, before explaining the range of relaxation and sedation options available at our clinic. At Truly Dental we will always work with you to find the approach to your care that benefits and suits you, ensuring that you always remain in control of your treatment experience – any of our procedures can be offered under Dental Sedation if that is what is right for you, and your dentist will discuss this route with you in depth if you wish to proceed with your next scheduled procedure visit under sedation.
At the beginning of your appointment for your required dental procedure, your dentist will discuss your overall treatment plan with you again, to confirm that you have been able to ask any questions you have and are happy to proceed with your treatment – once this has been gone through with you verbally, you will be asked to sign a consent form accepting your discussed treatment. Your dentist will also arrange any follow up appointments that will be needed at this stage, and communicate this to our front of house team and your escort, in addition to yourself.
This escort is a designated responsible adult of your choice, whom you will need to bring to the clinic with you on the day of your procedure under Dental Sedation. This is a measure to guarantee your safety, and we do require that you appoint a responsible escort to attend the clinic with you for your appointment, accompany you home afterwards and remain with you for the 24 hours immediately following your treatment – your dentist cannot proceed with your procedure under sedation on the scheduled day if you have not brought your responsible escort with you.
Once your treatment plan consent form is signed, and only once all of your questions have been addressed, will your dentist begin to administer the Dental Sedation. Most commonly the medication is given through a vein (intravenously) or in some rarer cases it will be provided through a drink or tablet. Your dentist will have discussed your needs and suitability for these different administration methods during your initial consultation.
Once administered, the sedative effects of the medication are quick to come into play and you will soon be in a completely relaxed state of mind with a vague awareness of time passing. Only once you have entered this calm, untroubled state will your dentist apply a local anaesthetic, to numb the area of your mouth they will be working on so that you will be completely pain-free throughout your procedure, at which point the treatment itself can begin.
Your IV certified clinical team will monitor your condition, vitals and state of mind throughout your procedure, to ensure your safety and comfort throughout the experience, and before you know it your treatment will be complete and you will be coming to awareness in a relaxing recovery room, accompanied by your escort.
Once your scheduled dental procedure is complete, you will be asked to stay in the clinic waiting area for an observation period, where you will be in the care of your escort and routinely monitored by staff – when your dentist is happy with your recovery from the initial effects of sedation you will be allowed to go home.
It takes about 24 hours for the sedative medication to completely leave your system, so a number of precautions must be taken. A detailed list of what you should and shouldn’t do following Dental Sedation will be provided to you at your initial consultation if you discussed being sedated for your procedure with your dentist, so that you could prepare in advance. Your escort can also be given an additional copy of these instructions at this time if needed, and you will also be given a post-procedural leaflet for the specific dental treatment you have just overgone, giving you detailed instructions of the appropriate aftercare for that treatment and guidance to optimise your recovery.
Once your dentist has cleared you to leave the clinic, your designated responsible escort must take you home and stay with you for the 24 hours immediately following your treatment, until the sedative will have completely exited your system. It is not appropriate for you to take public transport home in this condition, and your escort will need to organise to drive you or for a taxi to collect you both. You should take this time to relax at home and recover after your treatment, most importantly including not driving or operating machinery, not going into work or indeed making any important decisions during this 24 hour period.