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Oral Conscious Sedation Can Ensure More Comfortable Treatment

Enteral, or oral conscious sedation, is a form of sedation that uses an orally administered sedative that is usually combined with nitrous oxide. While using enteral sedation your body systems remain normal and you are able to breath on your own. Many patients experience some amnesia effect and don’t remember much of the dental visit.

With Enteral Conscious Sedation you will feel a deep relaxation and many people fall asleep. You will still be able to speak and respond to instructions.

The Medications given for sedation usually include a category of drugs that are similar to Valium such as Halicon (triazolam) and are very safe. Not only do these drugs provide a sedative effect but also as mentioned above provide some degree of amnesia. Enteral Conscious Sedation is often called Sedation Dentistry or Relaxation Dentistry.

dentist and patient in dental chair

Who Should Consider Conscious Sedation?

Anyone who has anxiety or fear of dentistry is a great candidate for sedation. Those with severe anxiety would be better served by IV Sedation because it can provide deeper and more predictable sedation. Also, people who are needing long dental appointments may opt for enteral sedation to keep them relaxed during the long visit. So if nitrous doesn’t provide the proper level then Enteral sedation may work very well for you. Enteral Sedation will help most patients reduce stress, fear, and anxiety associated with dental work to acceptable levels.

How Does Oral Conscious Sedation Work?

Making Your First Appointment

Call 972-618-5000 to schedule your appointment today.

Welcoming Visit

We gather information regarding your health and discuss with you your wants and desires. If you’re comfortable, we’ll take x-rays and look in your mouth. But you will never be judged or embarrassed.

Preparing for Your Sedation Visit

We’ll give you a prescription for a sedative to take when you arrive at the office. Don’t forget to bring your medication.

Arriving for Treatment

Your companion will bring you to the office. Nitrous Oxide will be provided to enhance your sedation. Your experienced sedation team will monitor you throughout your entire visit.

Going Home With Your New Smile

Your companion will take you home and stay with you until you’re completely recovered from your sedation medication.

The Next Day

Most patients feel no residual effects from the sedation and you’ll be pleased that you were able to get the dentistry you needed with much less stress.

No Motor Vehicles

You should not operate a motor vehicle for 24 hours after receiving Oral Conscious Sedation.

Comparison of Sedation Types

Nitrous OxideEnteral/Conscious (pill & nitrous)IV Sedation
Chance of “waking up” or being alert during procedure.Nitrous OxideYou will be alert during procedure but feel woozy.Enteral/Conscious (pill & nitrous)YesIV SedationNo
Best UseNitrous OxideMild anxiety or fear; any length appointment.Enteral/Conscious (pill & nitrous)Mild to moderate fear or anxiety; short to medium length appointments.IV SedationModerate to severe fear or anxiety, medium to long length appointments.
MedicationNitrous OxideNitrous Oxide OnlyEnteral/Conscious (pill & nitrous)Halcion, or similar sedative drug, plus Nitrous Oxide.IV SedationIV administered medications.
MonitoringNitrous OxideBP, pulse, respiratory rate monitored by Dentist.Enteral/Conscious (pill & nitrous)BP, pulse, respiratory rate monitored by Dentist.IV SedationPulse oximetry, BP, pulse, respiratory rate monitored by Anesthesiologist.
Effects on Gag ReflexNitrous OxideNoneEnteral/Conscious (pill & nitrous)Reduction in gag reflexIV SedationNo gag reflex
Effects on memory of appointmentNitrous OxideNoneEnteral/Conscious (pill & nitrous)Moderate reduction of memory of appointment.IV SedationNo memory of appointment.
Six hour fasting food, no liquids 2hr prior to appointment.Nitrous OxideNoEnteral/Conscious (pill & nitrous)YesIV SedationYes
Need adult responsible party for ride home and recovery.Nitrous OxideNoEnteral/Conscious (pill & nitrous)YesIV SedationYes
Recovery periodNitrous Oxide20 minutesEnteral/Conscious (pill & nitrous)6-8 hoursIV Sedation2-4 hours
Medically compromised patientNitrous OxideYes, depends on medical conditionEnteral/Conscious (pill & nitrous)NoIV SedationYes, Medical Doctor Anesthesia Certified present
Age restrictionsNitrous OxideAll agesEnteral/Conscious (pill & nitrous)18+IV SedationAll ages determined by Anesthesiologist
CostNitrous Oxide$Enteral/Conscious (pill & nitrous)$$IV Sedation$$$

Advantages of Oral Sedation

  • Easy to administer: Swallow a small pill
  • It is safe and easy to monitor
  • Works well for most people
  • Low cost

Disadvantages of Oral Sedation

  • The level of Sedation is not easily changed
  • Someone must drive you to and from your dental appointment
  • There is no analgesic (pain relief effect)
  • If the sedation level is not sufficient then dental work may need to be postponed and IV sedation considered

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