dental anesthesia

Everything You Need To Know About Dental Anesthesia

Anesthesia is a drug used in many dental procedures, mainly in surgeries. Although in some simple cases, it can also be used. It is convenient for you to know more about this vital element. 

For this reason, we are going to tell you everything you need to know about this topic.

What is dental anesthesia?

Anesthesia has been used in medicine since the mid-s. 19th. Currently, there are different types of anesthesia. Depending on the treatment, it is determined which type of anesthesia should be used.

The objective of all anesthesia is to eliminate the sensitivity of a specific area of our body: the mouth. In this way, dentists can perform any treatment painlessly and comfortably. While the effect of anesthesia lasts, the person will not feel anything in the area.

The dental procedures in which anesthesia is most used are dental fillings, root canals, implants, and extractions.

However, the dentist can also apply local anesthesia in dental hygiene, although it is not usual. Sometimes the patient has a lot of subgingival plaque. This makes the removal of tartar excessively uncomfortable. 

For this reason, the dentist may have to use anesthesia. However, the ideal is not to have to reach this point of tartar accumulation. Avoid this circumstance by going to the dentist every year for a professional cleaning.

What are the types of dental anesthetics?

In addition to injections, dentists can use topical anesthetic gels, creams, or anesthetic sprays.

Topical anesthetics usually have a mild effect. Many times the dentist uses them to apply anesthesia with a needle.

The dentist can also sedate the patient through mask sedation. In this case, nitrous oxide and oxygen are administered. The advantage of this type of sedation is that it avoids the discomfort of the needle. 

This type of anesthesia is used mainly during periodontal treatments and dental implant surgeries but not with the same frequency as before. 

So, we can divide the types of dental anesthesia into three types: Local, sedation, and general anesthesia.

Local anesthesia manages to numb part of the arcade, the tongue and the lip. This type of anesthesia works quickly (within 10 minutes) and lasts 30 to 60 minutes.

In sedation, the patient’s level of consciousness can be regulated. Depending on its administration, the patient may be fully conscious and responsive, semi-conscious, or barely conscious. 

For this reason, the level of sedation is classified as mild, moderate or deep. This type of anesthesia can be given orally (tablet or liquid), inhaled, intramuscular (IM), or intravenous (IV). Heart rate, blood pressure and breathing should be carefully controlled in moderate or deep sedation.

Finally, general anesthesia is used for long procedures or if the patient has a level of anxiety that could interfere with their treatment. With this type of anesthesia, the patient remains completely unconscious.

What are the side effects of dental anesthesia?

General anesthesia is the one with the most risks. In some cases, there may be reactions to milder types of anesthesia. Some adverse reactions to sedation and general anesthesia include:

  • Nausea or vomiting.
  • Headache.
  • Sweating.
  • Hallucinations, delirium, or confusion.
  • Dry mouth or sore throat.
  • Dizziness.
  • Temporary difficulty opening the jaw.

Our dentists are qualified and trained to answer any of your questions. The best way to avoid anxiety and fear of the side effects of dental anesthesia is to educate yourself about it. And don’t forget to schedule your regular dental checkup.

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