This is the classic form of pain control in most dental settings. Often colloquially referred to as 'novocaine', these locally delivered medications are injected around particular nerves to create a temporary numbness to control pain. If you prefer just local anesthesia, you will be entirely conscious and aware of your surroundings, but in a comfortable and pain-free manner.
Nitrous Oxide & Inhalational Anesthesia
Often known as 'laughing gas', is an extremely safe and effective method of anxiety and pain control in dentistry. Its main usage is to control mild anxiety, and also has other helpful effects of dissociation, euphoria, and even pain control to a small extent. It is administered before giving local anesthetic injections but is always used in conjunction with them for superior pain control, but perhaps in a more enjoyable manner.
Intravenous IV Sedation
This is also known as procedural sedation or twilight sedation. After a thorough examination by your surgeon, you may be a candidate for IV sedation. This is useful for very anxious patients or when a procedure is more involved. In conjunction with local anesthesia and nitrous oxide, additional medications are delivered through an IV to help cause amnesia, anxiety-control, and deeper levels of dissociation. The depth of anesthesia and unconsciousness is not as important as how safe and relaxed you are, so we only give enough medication to produce a comfortable and controlled surgical case - Some patients may fall asleep, while others will slip in and out of sleep, and others still may only be lightly sedated and may not sleep at all. As mentioned before, not all patients are candidates for IV Sedation in the office setting; this may be due to certain medical conditions, patient anatomy, or the type of procedure.
General anesthesia provides the full sensory-deprivation effect necessary for extremely anxious patients or for cases that require an operating room setting. This is the same anesthesia that is done for most other types of surgery you hear about. In order to maintain a high level of safety, these procedures are done in a hospital setting with an anesthesiologist; they will put you to sleep and keep you safe on monitors, while your surgeon performs your operation
To administer anesthesia in the office, an oral surgeon must have satisfactorily completed a highly strict and demanding checklist of competencies and abilities. A qualified practitioner, as with our surgeons, have done so, and they include:
- Completion of at least five months of hospital based anesthesia training.
- Perform at least 200 sedations and 200 general anesthetic cases during their oral surgery training.
- Prolonged management of patients in the ICU and emergency room settings.
- Certifications and successful examinations that demonstrate the necessary knowledge and capability to manage anesthetic and office emergencies. As such our surgeons are certified in BLS, ACLS, PALS, ATLS and board examination to maintain your safety.
- State licensure to administer general anesthesia
Again, when it comes to anesthesia, our first priority is the patient’s comfort and safety. If you have any concerns regarding the type of anesthesia that will be administered during your oral surgery procedure, please do not hesitate to discuss them with your doctor at the time of your consultation.