Sedation for Wisdom Tooth Extraction

Fear of dentists and dental treatments are common. People, young and old, develop such fears, making dental visits so much harder to keep, especially when the procedure involves pain and discomfort — as well as the use of the dreaded injection. Dental needles are not readily accepted by most patients, but since there are procedures that require the administration of anesthetic solution, needles cannot be completely ignored and avoided.

The wisdom teeth or the “third molars”, erupt into the mouth at the age 17 to 21 years. When conditions permit, they erupt as any other tooth would, but when space and position is compromised, they are unable to come out and become impact. An impacted tooth will be embedded by gums or bone, and often times hindered by the adjacent tooth and structures. Due to their position, they can cause discomfort and pain, as well as damage on the structures around it, so the surgical removal of the impacted tooth is in order.

Odontectomy, the appropriate term for the surgical removal of the impacted wisdom tooth, is performed with the administration of anesthetic solution. While local anesthesia is basically enough to provide an acceptable surgical condition for both the patient and the dentist, sedation techniques can be offered, this making the situation more favorable. Dental sedation for wisdom teeth removal resolves issues relating to fear, trauma and overall discomfort. It makes the patient more receptive to treatment and it provides the dentist a certain level of ease with regards to performance and care.


Sedation options

There are different types of sedation techniques utilized in Dentistry, varying between the production of minimal to moderate effects:

  1. Oral Sedation: This type of sedative technique can produce minimal to moderate effects depending on the dosage. Some oral sedatives are in pill form and they will have to be taken an hour before the procedure. Depending on the need of the patient, a specific dose will be given, and it can put the patient to sleep during the entire procedure.
  2. Inhaled Sedation: This type of sedative technique is fairly minimal in dosage and effect. The most common type of this is the administration of nitrous oxide or what is commonly called “laughing gas”. Nitrous oxide is administered by having the patient wear a mask. Nitrous oxide is administered in combination with oxygen, and as soon as it is given, the patient begins to feel relaxed and at ease. The effect and duration with which the gas will work is dependent on the strength or dosage. In general, the gas has the tendency to wear off quickly.
  3. Intravenous Sedation: IV type sedation produces moderate effects and it is able to do this because the sedative agent is administered directly into the blood system, through an injection into the vein. With the technique, the effect is obtained faster, so the procedure can be done as quickly as possible.
  4. Deep Sedation: The most extreme type of sedative technique is deep sedation or general anesthesia. In this type of sedative technique the patient is either almost unconscious or completely unconscious. They will appear to be in a deep sleep until they are awakened after the procedure or the effects are reversed with medication.


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