What is intravenous (IV) sedation?

IV sedation is when a sedative is injected directly into a vein. If you are nervous about having dental treatment or you are having a procedure which may cause discomfort, intravenous (IV) sedation is an effective and safe treatment.

What happens during IV sedation?

An extremely thin plastic tube will be put into a vein either in one of your arms or in the back of one of your hands. A drug (Midazolam) will then be injected which will quickly make you feel very sleepy and relaxed.

Throughout the procedure you will have a pulse oximeter clipped to your finger to measure your pulse and oxygen levels. Your blood pressure will be checked before and after the procedure.

As well as IV sedation, you will be given local anaesthetic. You will not be aware of being given the local anaesthetic because you will have it after the IV sedation.

This involves an injection into the gum surrounding the area that you are having treated and it is similar to those your dentist may have given to for fillings. The injection will take a couple of minutes to numb the area and it ensures that you will feel no pain during your treatment.

The length of time you will be sedated varies depending on the treatment that you are having. What happens after sedation?

You will need to stay in recovery with your dentist until you are considered ready to leave the surgery. Recovery time varies from person to person.

Until the following day after you have had IV sedation:

  • Do not travel along – travel home with your escort, by car if possible.
  • Do not drive or ride a bicycle or a motorcycle.
  • Do not use machinery.
  • Do not use alcohol.
  • Do not return to work until the next day

Why do I need IV sedation?

It is an ideal way of helping you to relax if you are nervous about dental treatment or you are having a procedure which may cause discomfort or distress.

What are the benefits?

While under sedation, you will feel deeply relaxed but you will still be able to understand and respond to requests from the dentist. You will be unaware of the operation and this form of treatment is ideal for patients who wish to avoid the noise and vibration of the drill.

Are there any risks?

IV sedation is extremely safe when a specially trained dentist supervises it

IV sedation has four main effects:

  • It will reduce your anxiety and make you feel relaxed.
  • It will make you feel sleepy.
  • It will make you unaware of the procedure.
  • It will result in partial, or total loss of memory of the procedure

Are there any Side effects?

As with any medication, the use of sedative anaesthetic agents can result in side effects. However, the incidence of side effects with sedation are very rare and include unintended loss of consciousness, drowsiness, dizziness, shivering, headaches, and post sedation nausea & vomiting.

Do I need to prepare for IV sedation?

  • Take your routine medicines at the usual times, your dentist will confirm if can take your medication as normal.
  • Have only light meals and non – alcoholic drinks on the day of your appointment

Are there any alternatives?

  • Local anaesthetic alone
  • General anaesthetic

Neither of these alternatives may be suitable for you. Your dentist will discuss your options that will be best for you.

Do I need to bring a friend/family member to my appointment with me?

A physically able, responsible adult escort must accompany you to your appointment and escort you home after your treatment. Your escort should remain in the waiting room throughout treatment. Arrangements must be made to ensure that you are supervised 24 hours after the procedure. It is essential that your escort gives you full attention to you and therefore should not be responsible for children, elderly and/or dependent relatives during this period.

How much does sedation cost?

From £300 per session

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Brenchley Dental

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Brenchley Dental

“The surgery is always welcoming, from the minute step into the surgery you are welcomed by very friendly reception staff. I have never been kept waiting long for my appointment they generally run on time but will inform you at reception if not. The dentist is very informative throughout the appointment and if treatment is needed will always explain the options you have and will give their advice. They are brilliant with my children. Brilliant service everytime I have visited.”

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