Say Goodbye to Dental Anxiety: Sedation Dentistry in Hamilton

Dental anxiety is a common feeling that many individuals experience when thinking about or visiting the dentist. This can happen for different reasons, like having a traumatic experience before, fear of pain or not being in control when they sit in the dentist’s chair.

Studies show that 20%-30% of adults experience dental anxiety. This can seriously affect oral health. When people are anxious, they often skip regular oral check-ups, letting small problems become big ones like gum disease or tooth loss. Taking care of your teeth regularly is key to preventing serious issues.

Both patients and dentists must address dental fear. When people feel relaxed at the dentist, it promotes healthier teeth and overall well-being.

What Is Sedation Dentistry? 

Sedation dentistry also referred to as sleep dentistry, is an innovative technique used to help patients relax during oral treatments. Dentists give patients special medicine to make them feel more comfortable. The goal is easy: to make people less anxious and have stress-free time at the dentist. 

Benefits and Risks of Sedation During Dental Procedures

Sedation dentistry can offer various advantages, such as

  • Anxiety relief
  • Pain relief
  • Faster dental procedures
  • Enabling longer procedures

It helps both patients and dentists in many ways. But both the patient and the dentist need to know about the possible risks and side effects of sedation, like

  • Drowsiness
  • Respiratory depression
  • Allergic reactions
  • Dry mouth
  • Nausea 
  • Headaches
  • Memory loss
  • Dizziness
  • Feeling faint
  • Excessive shivering

The risks and benefits can vary based on the type of sedation used and the individual’s health condition.


Types of Dental Sedation

Nitrous oxide (Laughing Gas): inhalation sedation

Nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas is used by dentists to help people feel anxiety-free during oral treatment. Its effects start quickly but go away fast, so people can return to their normal activities soon after dentist visits. It’s a good option for people who feel pain easily or have sensitive teeth.

Oral Sedation: Medication-Based Relaxation

Oral sedation, also called conscious or pill sedation, is a medication that helps patients stay calm during oral treatment. Dentists often give patients pills to make the central nervous system sleepy. You take these pills before your dentist appointment, and they make you feel calm and a bit sleepy during the procedure.

Intravenous (IV) Sedation: Deep Relaxation

IV sedation dentistry is a type of conscious sedation where an anxiety-relieving drug is given through the bloodstream during a dental procedure.

It helps patients feel deeply relaxed, almost like taking a really good nap. This is especially useful for those needing a lot of dental procedures or finding it tough to sit still for a long time.

When is Sedation Dentistry Recommended? 

  • Dental Phobia and Severe Anxiety 
  • Pediatric and Special Needs Patients 
  • Difficulty sitting still during dental procedures
  • A strong gag reflex
  • Fear of needles
  • The need for complex or lengthy dental procedures

The Sleep Dentistry Process: From Consultation to Post-Treatment Care

Patient Assessment and Evaluation

Before receiving a medication known as sedation to assist in your relaxation during an appointment your dentist will engage in a conversation with you. This ensures that the use of sedation is safe for your circumstances.

 Before recommending sedation, your dentist will discuss your health history, including any medical conditions, allergies, and current medications. This helps ensure your safety and choose the best sedation option for you. These inquiries aid the dentist in determining whether sedation is suitable for you.

Preparing for Sedation Dentistry

Before you get sleep medicine at the dentist, the dental staff will tell you things to do. Doing what they say helps the sleepy medicine work well and keeps everything safe. The dental staff helps you not to be scared and makes sure you have a good time with the dentist. 

During and After Sedation: The Dental Experience

After your dental sedation appointment, Your dentist will give you specific instructions for taking care of your body during your recovery. The instructions will be aimed at:

Take care of the pain

  • Based on the procedure you choose and your pain sensitivity the dentist can prescribe pain medications to ease any discomfort you might be experiencing.
  • Ice packs applied to the affected area can aid in reducing pain and swelling.
  • Make sure to choose soft foods and avoid eating foods that are spicy or hot since they can irritate the area being treated.

Modify your diet

  • In the initial 24 hours after sedation, It is crucial to avoid the consumption of caffeine and alcohol. These substances may interact with sedation medications and extend their effects.
  • Choose easy and bland meals that can be chewed easily and taken in. This is crucial if you’ve had surgery on your mouth or have stitches in your mouth.
  • Avoid hard, crunchy, or sticky food items that could cause irritation to the area being treated or break any stitches.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. But be careful not to drink through straws because suction could cause pain or even dislodge stitches.

Maintain a clean and healthy mouth

  • It is important to brush your teeth gently using a soft-bristled brush is essential to ensure your oral hygiene and avoid infection.
  • Do not use mouthwash for at least the initial 24 hours because it could hurt the area you have treated.
  • Cleanse your mouth with warm salt water at least once throughout the day to aid in healing and decrease inflammation.

Rest and recovery

  • Take a good night’s sleep in the initial 24 hours after the procedure.
  • Do not engage in strenuous exercise or vigorous activities until you are fully restored.
  • Do not drive or operate machinery for at least 24hrs following the sedation.

Follow-up appointments

  • Schedule a follow-up appointment to monitor your healing and address any concerns.
  •  Notify your dentist if discomfort or swelling persists beyond the expected healing time.


In conclusion, dentist visits can be a comfortable experience.
If you ever feel nervous about dental visits, remember that our Hamilton dentists have effective ways to help you feel calm. 

Now you know, visiting our dental clinic in Hamilton is stress-free with sedation dentistry. Do not forget to brush your teeth, eat healthy snacks, and follow your dentist’s tips for a shining, bright smile! 

Book your appointment with our dentists in Hamilton for more details!