I have dental anxiety and need a procedure I am not comfortable with. My dentist doesn’t use any sedation. Is it okay to take some sleeping pills before the procedure so I can just sleep through it or do I need to see a sedation dentist for this?
This is tricky. With a sedation dentist, they do more than just administer sedation medications. They monitor your vital signs during the procedure and someone is with you at all times. Additionally, they’ve received special training for what is normal with a patient when they’re in sedation and what isn’t, as well as emergency protocols if something is off.
Your dentist may very well allow you to take something before your procedure, but he won’t have that specific training if your body reacts oddly. It’s imperative he knows ahead of time everything you take, even over-the-counter medication you’re taking. This way he doesn’t inadvertently use a medication or numbing agent which will interfere with what you’ve already taken.
Dental Sedation and Sleep
One difference between dental sedation and sleeping pills is your ability to respond. With the sedation a dentist gives you, you are not put asleep. Instead, you are completely relaxed. While it is true that many patients dose off and sleep during the procedure, it’s not the deep sleep you would get with sleeping pills.
Instead, you’ll be able to respond to requests from your dentist or let him know if something seems off.
The key for you will be to communicate with your dentist. He may agree to the sleeping pills. He may suggest an alternative.
If you can’t work out a solution you’re comfortable with you may have to see a different dentist for this one procedure.
What you don’t want to do is put off your treatment. This can blow up into a dental emergency quickly. It can also cost you a tooth, leading to the need to replace your tooth with dental implants or an alternative.
This blog is brought to you by West Seneca Dentist Dr. Warren Krutchick.