While there are varying levels of sedation dentistry, oral conscious sedation will not put you to sleep. Oral conscious sedation uses modern medicine to fully and completely relax you before dental procedures, you are very much awake and responsive during the entire procedure. During the appointment we will be able to ask questions and receive responses. General anesthesia, however, will place you into a sleep state.
You might not remember receiving the shots of procaine, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t necessary. The amnesia effect of oral conscious sedation leads to many patients belief that their treatment was provided without needles or numbing medications. As the target patient for conscious sedation is the patient fearful of dental procedures, this outcome is welcomed.
While the benefits of oral sedation dentistry for extensive dental work are vast, that should not limit the procedures for which oral sedation dentistry is offered. Many patients have anxiety and fear that prevents them from seeking even the most basic dental care. Providing oral sedation will allow those fearful patients the opportunity to get the care they need, and often they are the patients that need care the most.
The medications used in oral sedation dentistry have been around for decades and DOCS Education has been providing continuing education for the implementation of oral sedation in dental practices for 13 years. With tens of thousands of sedation cases performed across the country, oral sedation dentistry is far from experimental. It is the safest, most reliable way to bring dental care to those patients who would not otherwise seek dental treatment.
Regulations and reality don't always meet eye to eye. Dentists frequently ask me how they are supposed to comply with a given regulation, usually related to sedation or advertising. In many cases, my answer is unfortunately, "you can't." No matter how carefully phrased a regulation is, if the issue is complex, it is hard to fully comply with that regulation. Regulations are just simple words while dentistry is a very complex intertwining of topics and sub-topics. How do you craft language that encompasses every possible outcome? Life isn't that simple and neither is dentistry.
This information was taken directly from DOCS education, North America's most recognized sedation sedation educator since 1999.