550 Water Street, Bldg. K-1
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Norman, Douglas C D.D.S.
12637 Hesperia Rd # C
Victorville, CA, 92395-7774
Shih, Weilin D.D.S.
1001 Sunvalley Blvd
Concord, CA, 94520-5802
Komatsu, Keith D.D.S.
1921 S Catalina Ave # 3
Redondo Beach, CA, 90277-5516
Plum, Todd G D.D.S.
29 Rotary Way
Vallejo, CA, 94591-8475
Patient comfort and care is a top priority for a sedation dentist. They recognize that dental anxiety or discomfort can be associated with some dentistry procedures. Fortunately, a variety of dental procedures using dental anesthetics are available to relieve both anxiety and discomfort. Talk with your dentist to find out which is right for you.
This is the most frequently used type of dental anesthetic for sedation dentistry procedures. Although often referred to as "Novocain," this once popular painkilling drug has actually been replaced by more effective anesthetics such as Lidocaine for a comfortable dental care treatment. It also works very well for temporary relief of a tooth ache.
However, the name has become so much a part of the American vocabulary, it's now used in generic terms. Prior to injecting the local anesthetic, the dentist often swabs a topical anesthetic over the injection site to prevent the patient from even feeling the needle.
Patients seeking comfortable dentistry can consult with their dentists to choose anti-anxiety agents either administered by mouth, inhalation or injection. Nitrous oxide, often referred to as laughing gas, helps to ease patient anxiety. The gas is inhaled by patients, inducing relaxation, so they can approach dental procedures with less stress.
This may be required for complex procedures or for dental patients with special needs. With the administration of general anesthesia, the patient is unconscious; with deep sedation dentistry or sleep dentistry, dental patients are deeply relaxed and not fully aware of their surroundings during their dental treatment.
Prior to treatment, your dentist will need to know a few things regarding your health history such as:
Some medicines may interfere with the efficiency of an anesthetic requiring an adjustment in your medication schedule. Your health history is very important information for the dentist. During the consultation, you can ask questions about any dental procedures that may be of concern during your dental procedure.
The drugs used as dental anesthetics are approved by the Food and Drug Administration and are safe. Anesthetic providers are professionals with a commitment to patient safety and comfort.
A dental anesthetic can be administered by a general dentist, a dental anesthesiologist or an M.D. Certification is required and is regulated on a state-by-state basis. Discuss sedation with your dentist at your next visit.
By Brian J. Gray, DDS, MAGD, FICO
What do you want from your relationship with your dentist? Oftentimes, this question is answered when there is a dental problem or emergency requiring immediate attention. There is a different approach to your relationship with your dentist that relates to your own needs and dental health.
This approach is designed to help you create the kind of experiences you want with your dentist. You have a choice about this relationship and how it can support and assist you in your life. It begins with the simple question stated at the beginning of this article: What do you want from your relationship with your dentist?
The answer to this question can take many forms. For some people it may mean having a lot of information about their dental health and future. They seek facts to know they are making good, informed decisions. Others may want a friendly relationship in which openness and communication are valued.
They want information but, more importantly, they want to know they are important to the dentist and the dental team. Some individuals want minimal information and discussion -- just the facts and the solutions to take care of any problem.
We all have different wants in our relationships with health professionals such as dentists. Here are four tips to assist you in deciding what you want in your relationship with your dentist:
Each person looks for different things in their relationships. It is your responsibility to determine what you want and look for that in the relationship with your dentist. The answers to the questions above will tell you something about this.
The next step is communicating what you want so that you are understood. Only you know when someone else understands you. Here are four tips to assist you in this communication process:
Communicating what you want is important to your dentist for it is the best way for him or her to plan for the optimal dental health for you.
By Brian DesRoches, PhD