Understanding Sedation Dentistry: Types and Uses in Dental Care

Dental visits can stir up anxiety for many people. Whether it’s the sound of the drill or the mere thought of sitting in the dentist’s chair, these fears are real and quite common. Fortunately, sedation dentistry has emerged as a compassionate solution to make dental procedures more comfortable and less stressful.

What is Sedation Dentistry?

Sedation dentistry involves the use of medication to help patients relax during dental procedures. It’s sometimes referred to as “sleep dentistry,” although that term isn’t entirely accurate, as patients are usually awake, except for those under general anesthesia.

Types of Sedation Used in Dentistry:

  • Nitrous Oxide: Commonly known as ‘laughing gas,’ this is a mild sedative inhaled through a mask placed over the nose. Nitrous oxide helps patients relax but doesn’t put them to sleep. The effects wear off quickly, allowing patients to drive themselves home after the procedure.
  • Oral Sedation: This involves taking a prescribed pill about an hour before the procedure. Depending on the dose, oral sedation can range from minimal to moderate. For minimal sedation, patients take a smaller dose and remain awake but relaxed. A larger dose may lead to a state where patients are awake but less aware of the procedure.
  • IV Moderate Sedation: This type of sedation is administered through a vein, so it works more quickly. It allows the dentist to continually adjust the level of sedation.
  • Deep Sedation and General Anesthesia: Under general anesthesia, patients are completely unconscious. Deep sedation means patients are on the edge of consciousness but can still be awakened. These methods are used for more extensive procedures.

Who Can Benefit from Sedation Dentistry?

Sedation dentistry is ideal for patients who:

  • Experience dental anxiety or phobia.
  • Have a low pain threshold.
  • Can’t sit still in the dentist’s chair.
  • Have a bad gag reflex.
  • Need to undergo a large amount of dental work.

Safety and Professional Care

While sedation dentistry is generally safe when administered by experienced professionals, it’s important to discuss your medical history and any current medications with Dr. Briskie. At Revive Dental, our team is trained and experienced in sedation dentistry, ensuring our patients’ safety and comfort at all times.


Sedation dentistry has revolutionized dental care, allowing patients to receive the treatment they need without the anxiety and discomfort. It’s essential for patients to communicate openly with their dentist about their concerns and preferences. Together, you can decide on the best sedation option for your needs.

If you have any questions about sedation dentistry or wish to schedule an appointment, please feel free to contact us at Revive Dental. Your comfort and care are our top priorities.


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Revive Dental

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Firestone, CO 80504
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