There are many people who, for a variety of reasons, have been traumatised by previous experiences of dental treatment and who can only be regarded as ‘phobic’.
These unfortunate people pale at the thought of treatment and may well suffer sleepless, anxious nights prior to an appointment. Their heart rate rises at the sight of an appointment card and they will cancel many appointments until such a time that pain forces them to seek treatment and thus may then be further traumatised by events.
It is now possible to offer relief to these patients with a technique known as
There are various levels of ‘conscious sedation’, achieved either by either a simple drink or, in more demanding cases, by the administration of a cocktail of drugs by a qualified anaesthetist. Either way, the drugs have a potent relaxation effect and also a marked amnesic quality.
However as the term implies, you are conscious throughout, although you may think you have been ‘asleep’, and therefore it is a very safe technique, avoiding the hazards of general anaesthesia.
The technique is suitable for both long and short procedures although very long procedures may be more suitable for treatment with our anaesthetist.
Continual monitoring means the level of sedation can be adjusted almost instantly to suit the complexity of the treatment so there is never any worry of ‘waking up’ during the procedure.
You are awake at completion of operation and fully ambulatory although an escort home is a legal requirement.
Frequently asked questions:
Q. Why am I afraid of the dentist?
A. Being afraid of the dentist means different things to different people and different people will have different triggers for their fears. Some are worried by sounds, others are worried by smells but whatever the trigger, it brings back memories of bad experiences, often as a child, when they have suffered discomfort during dental treatment.
Q. Why should I not be afraid now?
A. Dental techniques have improved greatly in recent years and modern dentistry should be completely painless. However, if you have anxieties you will still feel nervous at the thought of going to the dentist and this will not change until you have had an initial visit to meet the dental team and discover how caring, understanding and supportive they are.
Q. What will happen at the first appointment?
A. Your first appointment will be just for a consultation, radiographs and a chat about any treatment you may need. It will give you the opportunity to interview us!
Q. I haven’t been to the dentist for a long time, will I need a lot of treatment?
A. It is impossible to answer this question without examining you but, because of the addition of fluoride to toothpastes , teeth are stronger with less decay and therefore you may be surprised at how little treatment you need.
Q. If I need lot’s of treatment, can it all be done in one visit?
A. We will always carry out treatment in the minimum number of visits, particularly if we can use a conscious sedation technique.However, it is rarely possible to carry out all treatment in one visit only, particularly if it is some time since you last attended. This is because, for the long term success of any restorative treatment, it is essential that the supporting tissues are healthy. To achieve this, and to demonstrate methods of home care to enable you to maintain a healthy mouth, at least one appointment is usually required for cleaning . This can be carried out utilising conscious sedation if necessary and also local anaesthetic to ensure your comfort. Please do not be misled by clinics that may promise one appointment only- it is not possible to place long lasting restorations if the supporting tissues- gums- are not healthy.
Q. Will it hurt?
A. NO! The use of the most modern methods of analgesia ensures pain free treatment. An anaesthetic paste is applied to the gum before administration of the local anaesthetic to ensure you feel nothing. However, should you experience any discomfort at all, please let us know- we will respond to ensure your comfort.
Q. I am afraid of needles- what can I do?
A. Many people are afraid of injections, particularly in the mouth .An anaesthetic paste is applied to the area of gum that is to be injected and this numbs the gum so you do not feel the needle.
Q. I hate the sound of the drill. Can I take anything with me?
A. We have music playing at all times and give you headphones to wear during treatment. There is a broad selection of music available for you to choose from but please feel free to bring any favourite music that you find relaxes you.
Q. Can I ask the dentist to stop if I need to?
A. We always tell you to raise your hand if you want us to stop for any reason. We will always respond and once you know that you can control the situation, you will feel more confident.