IV Sedation

IV Sedation

Sedation dentistry is an anxiety-free approach to dentistry. With sedation dentistry, special medications are used to relax patients during their dental procedures. There are different levels of sedation, ranging from minimal to deep. Sedation dentistry is sometimes called “sleep dentistry”, however most patients under sedation remain conscious during their procedure. Sedation dentistry is most commonly used to reduce anxiety in patients, but it can also be used to repress a reactive gag reflex and to make your dental treatment fly by.


Did You Know?

Around 75% of adults have some type of dental fear or anxiety and about 10% of these individuals have an intense dental phobia. Dental sedation can help alleviate these anxieties and make dental visits much more relaxed.


Frequently Asked Questions:

man sitting in dental chair afraid and covering his mouth

Am I a candidate for dental sedation?

You may be a candidate for dental sedation if you have anxieties about undergoing dental procedures, have a reactive gag reflex, have trouble sitting still for long periods of time, or are undergoing a potentially invasive dental procedure.

However, you may not be the best candidate for dental sedation if you are pregnant, have allergies to benzodiazepines, are intoxicated, have CNS depression, or have certain types of glaucoma diagnosis. In addition, you may need to proceed with caution if you have psychosis, sleep apnea, are elderly, or have lung, kidney, or liver problems. Before any dental sedation, Drs. Chris and Kristie Vinson will conduct a thorough consultation to make sure that dental sedation is the best choice for you.

To find out how dental sedation can make your dental appointment easier, schedule a consultation with Drs. Chris and Kristie Vinson today!


What types of dental sedation does Tulsa Precision Dental offer?

Tulsa Precision Dental offers three types of dental sedation: inhaled, oral, and IV. All three options offer different delivery methods, as well as different levels of sedation. Drs. Chris and Kristie Vinson will help you decide which dental sedation method is best for your individual needs.

  • Inhaled Sedation: nitrous oxide, commonly referred to as laughing gas, is inhaled through a mask placed over your nose. Inhaled sedation can achieve minimal to moderate sedation depending on the concentration of the gas. Often, nitrous oxide will make you feel very relaxed and possibly even slightly euphoric. With nitrous oxide you will still be able to respond and will remain awake.


  • Oral Sedation: a Halcion pill is generally taken the night before and the morning of your dental procedure. This method can achieve minimal to moderate sedation depending on its dosage. With oral sedation you will be drowsy, but responsive.


  • IV Sedation: an IV is inserted and sedation medication is delivered directly through the vein. This type of sedation works the fastest and can offer the deepest level of sedation. It can also be regulated easier because the results are almost instant. At the deepest level, you may fall into a light sleep, but you can be easily woken.


How do I prepare for my dental appointment if I am receiving dental sedation?

Your preparations for your dental appointment will depend upon which type of sedation you are having. Inhaled sedation is the easiest sedation method to prep for because there are no fasting requirements. However, it is recommended to eat light the day of your procedure and stop all food intake 2 hours before your procedure time. This will decrease the possibility of nausea and vomiting afterwards.

Woman taking an oral sedative pill

To prepare for oral sedation, you will be given instructions on when to take your medication. Because you will likely need to take the medication the night before and morning of your procedure, you will also need to find someone to drive you to and from your appointment. In addition, oral sedation requires that you fast for 6 hours before the procedure.

To prepare for IV sedation, you will also need to find someone to drive you to and from your appointment and you will also need to fast for 8 hours prior to your procedure. Because of the fasting requirements, most appointments requiring IV sedation are generally scheduled for the morning. Depending on circumstances, you may also be instructed to avoid taking certain medications the morning of your procedure.


What does dental sedation feel like?

The sensations you experience while under dental sedation can vary, however the majority of people report feeling calm and drowsy. People also describe feeling indifferent to things happening around them and they don’t experience any anxiety to various sights or sounds. With nitrous oxide, people have reported feelings of euphoria and possible dizziness. The dizziness can usually be remedied by adjusting the gas concentration. If undergoing oral or IV sedation, some individuals experience falling into a light sleep. With IV sedation, patients may or may not remember the procedure.


What should I expect after my appointment using dental sedation?

There are different expectations depending on the type of dental sedation used during your procedure. Inhaled sedation is the easiest to bounce back from because it stops being effective once the gas is no longer being inhaled. Because of this, most people who undergo inhaled sedation can drive themselves home and don’t experience any lasting effects.

The effects from oral sedation will last about 1-2 hours, so you may still feel drowsy after your procedure is over. The effects of oral sedation can also last throughout the day, which is why you must have a driver accompany you to your appointment. After receiving oral sedation, it is recommended to rest for the day.

Because the effects of IV sedation are the strongest, the lasting effects are also the strongest. IV sedation can cause you to feel groggy or out of it for most of the day after your procedure. Because of this, you are required to have a driver, someone should keep an eye on you for at least a day, and you should take it easy.


At Tulsa Precision Dental, your smile is our top priority. For a full range of dental services using the latest in dental technology, schedule a consultation with Tulsa, OK dentists Drs. Chris and Kristie Vinson today!

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