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April 21, 2017

Sedation dentistry is a type of dentistry performed while the patient is in some level of unconsciousness. It is often used for patients who have anxiety about going to the dentist or for patients who are very sensitive. Sedation dentistry is also used for dental procedures that take a long time to complete. There are several types and levels of sedation available. Dr. Guttman suggests different types of sedation depending on the dental procedure to be performed and the level of anxiety and sensitivity the patient is experiencing.

Although sometimes referred to as sleep dentistry, not all types of sedation dentistry are intended to put a patient to sleep. While some forms of sedation will put patients into a sleep-like state, others are only meant to relax a patient so that he or she feels no anxiety about the dental procedure and little or no discomfort. Just as there are different types of dental sedation techniques, there are also varying levels of sedation that can be achieved. Dr. Guttman’s practice administers oral conscious sedation, IV sedation, anxiolysis, and nitrous gas. Below is a description of each type of sedation he provides.

Oral Conscious Sedation

Medication that is administered orally to reduce fears or discomfort, but not put the patient to sleep, is called oral conscious sedation. With this type of sedation, no needles are required. This type is less expensive than other types of sedation, like those administered through an IV.

IV Sedation

Intravenous (or IV) sedation is administered directly into the patient’s blood stream. This type of sedation may be preferable if the patient’s levels of fear or discomfort are very high. The IV sedation is safely provided by Dr. Robert Nolan. He is one of a few dentist in the Los Angeles area who are certified to administer IV sedation. While Dr. Guttman performs the dental procedure, Dr. Nolan will monitor the patient’s IV sedation.

Anxiolysis

Mild oral sedatives - like Valium or Triazolam - are used to generate a “light sedation” called anxiolysis. Sometimes “laughing gas” - nitrous oxide - is used with the oral sedative to increase the patient’s levels of relaxation and comfort without putting the patient to sleep.

Nitrous Oxide

To put the patient at ease and practically eliminate pain due to dental procedures, “laughing gas” - nitrous oxide - might be the best option. This type of sedation can put the patient in a relaxed state and elevate the patient’s level of comfort without completely putting the patient to sleep.

Anxiety and pain are no reasons to keep you from having the healthy and beautiful looking smile you deserve. Dr. Guttman and his team are specially trained to put the most anxious patients at ease. Call (310) 827-5094 to set up an appointment for a totally relaxed experience!