Anesthesia and sedation for dental treatments

At the most basic level a local anesthetic is used to prevent pain. Applied directly to the treatment site, used on its own it will not alter consciousness. Sedation in conjunction with anesthetic medications is used to relieve pain or to relax and calm a patient in preparation for a dental procedure.

The following questions address the use of sedation and general anesthesia in dentistry. Click on each question to expand the answer.

What is sedation and general anesthesia?

When are sedation and anesthesia used?

What is the most common method of sedation?

Can all dentists provide sedation or general anesthesia in their offices?

What level of training is required?

How do I know if my dentist/dental office can provide sedation?

Is sedation and general anesthesia safe?

What are the effects of sedation or general anesthesia?

Do I require sedation or general anesthesia for my dental procedure/treatment?

What should I know/ask before agreeing to any level of sedation for my dental procedure/treatment?

It is also very important for you to let your dentist know about your overall health.

Why is my dentist recommending sedation for my child?

What type of sedation is available for children?

Are there any specific concerns for children?