desertsmiles sedation dentistry minfo1

sedation dentistry at desert smiles

Dental phobia is a serious issue that impacts thousands of men and women. In some cases, this fear stems from a previous experience that was unpleasant, frightening, or painful. In others, the source of dental anxiety and discomfort may not have a clear foundation.

Regardless of its cause, dental phobia can pose serious roadblocks to lasting oral health and beauty. Failure to maintain routine visits can result in tooth decay, gum disease, tooth infection, and other serious issues – some of which can allow bacteria to enter the bloodstream, increasing risks for heart failure, stroke, and certain types of cancer.

It is important that everyone visit the dentist every six months to maintain peak oral health. But when you feel anxious, nervous, or frightened of the dentist, this prospect can be terribly uncomfortable.

We completely understand.

Dr. Tenney and the staff at Desert Smiles have created a safe, comfortable, and welcoming environment to help quell dental anxiety. Thoughtful, patient, and gentle without compromising quality, we offer comforts and services that can help make even the most nervous patient feel at ease.

Call 602.734.0050 to schedule your dental comfort consultation. We will listen to your concerns, provide you with honest information about your options, and help you choose the best solution for your needs.


conscious oral sedation

Conscious oral sedation is a safe, effective, and reliable method of achieving absolute comfort before and during your dental procedure. Oral dental sedation is taken in pill form prior to your appointment. This enables the medications to begin working before treatment starts and helps ensure calm and comfort throughout.

With conscious oral sedation, you will be alert enough to respond to directions, which is important for your safety. However, many patients report having little to no memory of the procedure or treatment itself, which may be important for your lasting comfort. During your entire time in our care, we will take every step to ensure you are relaxed and safe.

It is important to note that if you are taking an oral sedative, you will need to arrange for a ride to and from your appointment. While the effects will wear off within hours, these medications can make driving very dangerous while they are still active in your system.


am I a good sedation dentistry candidate?

You may be the ideal candidate for sedation dentistry if you suffer from dental phobia. In addition to anxiety, this service can assist with:

  • Sensitive teeth
  • Jaw pain/TMJ
  • An overactive gag-reflex
  • Excessive saliva flow
  • General restlessness
  • Dislike of needles
  • Difficulties responding to topical numbing agents

If you struggle with any discomfort related to dental work – physical or emotional – you may be a good sedation dentistry candidate. The best way to find out for sure is through a one-on-one consultation at our comfortable and welcoming Glendale office.


nitrous oxide

woman undergoing sedation dentistry

Nitrous Oxide, commonly known as laughing gas, is one of the safest anti-anxiety agents available. It can produce relaxation and a mild sedated state for anxious dental patients. Better still, nitrous oxide is hypoallergenic and its effects are completely reversible within a couple of minutes. This ease of reversal in its effects allows you to drive home safely or go to work immediately after your dental visit.

All patients are candidates for nitrous oxide therapy. The depth of relaxation can be adjusted depending on your level of anxiety. Nitrous oxide can also reduce things like an overactive gag-reflex and excessive saliva flow, making it a big help for patients getting impressions.

Nitrous oxide is delivered through a simple, scented nosepiece that will provide a feeling of slight numbness, security, and warmth. It is rare that anyone truly "laughs" as the name implies, but nearly everyone experiences a level of pleasant euphoria.

Nitrous oxide is safe for children.


we care about you

Your comfort is important to us. Your oral health is important to us. Ultimately, your satisfaction with your smile is important to us. We are here to help with all of these things.

Careful, kind, thoughtful, and responsive, Dr. Tenney and our staff welcome the opportunity to meet with you, listen to your concerns, and guide you towards the best solutions. Attentive, effective, and committed, we offer the most advanced treatments while maintaining the highest quality of patient care. We look forward to meeting with you and discussing your specific needs.


are there any adverse side effects to sedation dentistry?

Side effects of sedation dentistry may include drowsiness, dry mouth, temporary memory lapse, confusion, and headache. For most people, these side effects will self-resolve within a few hours, but it is a good idea to arrange for a ride to and from your appointment to ensure you give the medication enough time to wear off.


will i still feel pain while being sedated?

You will not feel any pain while you are under sedation. If you are undergoing a more involved procedure that requires a recovery period, we will provide you with everything you need to remain comfortable after your procedure as well.


what should i do before dental sedation?

If we are using conscious oral sedation to help you feel comfortable, you will want to avoid eating and drinking in the hours leading up to your procedure. Most patients do well with nitrous oxide even without preparation, but it may cause nausea in others. If you plan on eating before your appointment, make it a smaller meal to help avoid complications.


how long does the sedation take to wear off?

The sedation effect of nitrous oxide wears off within minutes.

The sedation effects of oral sedatives typically last for two to eight hours, depending on the medication used, the physiology of the patient, and how much sedation was administered.

If you are undergoing sedation with nitrous oxide, you should be able to drive yourself to and from your appointment and will likely be able to resume normal activities, such as work, after your procedure. If you are undergoing oral sedation, you will need to arrange for a ride home and should plan on taking the remainder of the day to rest.


what are common procedures performed under sedation?

Any procedure can be performed under sedation. Commonly, sedation is used for longer or more involved procedures, such as dental implant placement, but if you struggle with dental phobia, sedation can be used during even basic services like general cleanings.

At Desert Smiles, we are committed to the health and happiness of our patients. If you are interested in learning more about your sedation options, no matter which procedure you are having performed, we would be happy to provide information.


is there any recovery involved if you are sedated?

There is no recovery period for nitrous oxide but you may feel foggy, light-headed, and dizzy for a few hours if you have undergone oral sedation. We will provide you with information on how to maintain optimal comfort during this time to help ensure you have the most rewarding experience possible.


contact us today

To schedule a sedation dentistry consultation, please call 602.734.0050 today. Located in Glendale, Desert Smiles welcomes patients from Scottsdale, Phoenix, Mesa, Chandler, and all surrounding Arizona communities.

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