Vital help for nervous patients

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What is conscious sedation?

Conscious sedation is a form of anxiety control which makes dental treatment more pleasant for the patient. It is effective, predictable and very safe. Conscious sedation is the modern alternative to general anaesthesia for most dental procedures.

Conscious sedation will make you feel sleepy and relaxed. Most patients can remember little or nothing of the procedure, but it does affect any part of your memory before the drug is given. Following your sedation, you will need to stay at the practice until we are satisfied that you are safe to be accompanied home by a responsible adult. This is because your judgement may be affected for the next 24 hours.

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 will then be injected which will quickly make you feel very sleepy and relaxed.

Throughout the procedure you will have a gadget 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 sedation, you will be given a local anaesthetic. You will not be aware of being given the local anaesthetic because you will have it after the sedation.

What to do before your appointment on the day of treatment
  • All patients must be accompanied home by a responsible adult
  • DO continue to take routine medicine unless the dentist advises otherwise?DO tell the dentists if you have been to see the family doctor or attended hospital since your appointment was made
  • DO give details of any medicines, tablets or pills which you are taking which you have not told us previously about
  • Do inform the dentist if you might be pregnant or if you are breast feeding
  • DO NOT have a heavy meal on the day of your appointment, but please do eat something and preferable fast 2 hours before your appointment time
  • DO NOT drink any alcohol on the same day
  • DO NOT bring anyone with you other than a responsible adult who will take you home
Precautions after intravenous sedation
  • DO rest for a few hours and take the rest of the day quietly
  • DO eat light and easily digestible food for the rest of the day
  • DO take medicines, tablets or pills which have been prescribed for you
  • DO NOT drive any vehicle, operate machinery, use cookers, kettles, and irons or make any
  • business decisions on the same day as your treatment. Your reflexes and judgment may have been effected
  • DO NOT drink any alcohol until the following day

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Sedation can also be used for non-anxious patients, some patients choose to have sedation done if they are having Implant surgery or other dental surgery as these could be long appointments.


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.


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.