Oral Conscious Sedation
Do you experience high levels of anxiety when visiting the dentist? You may be a candidate for Oral Conscious Sedation Dentistry. Drs. Colson and Colson are certified by the Dental Organization for Conscious Sedation (DOCS) to administer (oral conscious) sedation for dental treatment. They are specially trained to prescribe and administer the proper medication and dosage for treatment. Dr. Chad Colson and Dr. Jill Colson monitor your vital signs throughout the procedure with a pulse-oximeter (pulse, blood pressure, and oxygen saturation) to ensure your safety. When being treated with sedation, you are the sole focus of Dr. Chad Colson and Dr. Jill Colson–no other patients are scheduled during that time.
Advantages to patients include:
- Treatment is completed when you are in a more relaxed frame of mind.
- You will have less difficulty sitting through a lengthy procedure.
- Multiple treatments and full mouth restorations can occur during the same visit.
- Less discomfort after treatment.
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The most commonly prescribed dental related drugs that treat anxiety belong to the “benzodiazepine” family. These drugs such as Valium, Halcion, Xanax, or Ativan. These drugs decrease anxiety by binding and toning down activity within “fear” receptors in the brain.
There are two different types of benzodiazepines:
- Sedative-Hypnotics: These drugs induce calm, including drowsiness and even sleep. This sleep state is actually a form of hypnosis which is a form of physiological sleep.
- Anti-Anxiety Drugs: These are drugs that relieve anxiety and induce a state of calm and relaxation.
While benzodiazepines act as sedatives AND anti-anxiety drugs, some are highly targeted at areas within the brain that focus on sleep. Others act in a more specific way and target fear centers in the brain. In most cases, higher doses act as sedatives and induce sleep, while in lower doses, they reduce anxiety without sedation.
Benzodiazepines are also Central Nervous System (CNS) depressants (i.e. there can be a decline in blood pressure and breathing). It is important to note that they shouldn’t be mixed with other CNS depressants such as alcohol. It’s important that you utilize the dose your dentist or doctor recommends. It is possible to overdose, and overdoses could lower your breathing to dangerously low levels, which could result in coma or death.
Please note that you shouldn’t travel on your own after you’ve taken any of these drugs. Make sure you have an escort, even if you traveled by bus or foot! It’s easy to become disorientated.
When not to take benzodiazepines:
Some of these drugs can affect your liver and heart. It’s important to check with your practitioner and/or pharmacist. You should be sure to inform us if any of the following apply: known allergy to the drug, narrow-angle glaucoma, pregnancy, severe respiratory disease (COPD), congestive heart failure (CHF), impaired kidney or liver function, depression/bipolar disorder/psychoses, and/or chronic bronchitis among other conditions. It’s also important to let us know if you are taking other medications. There could be possible drug interactions.