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IV sedation

A visit to the dentist for some patients can be very upsetting and a stressful event.

To help these patients sedation can be used to relax them and allow treatment to be carried out in a much less stressful way. Quite often patients find that after receiving a course of treatment under sedation, their confidence is restored and future simple treatments can be carried out without the need of sedation.

What is IV Sedation

Intravenous Conscious Sedation (aka “IV sedation”) is when a drug, usually of the anti-anxiety variety, is administered into the blood system during dental treatment.

This is achieved by gaining acces to a vein in the arm or the hand.  A pulse-oximeter is used to monitor your vital signs throughout.  You remain conscious during conscious IV sedation. You will also be able to understand and respond to requests from your dentist.

However, you may not remember much (or anything at all) about what went on because of two things:

  1. IV sedation induces a state of deep relaxation and a feeling of not being bothered by what’s going on
  2. the drugs used for IV sedation produce either partial or full memory loss (amnesia) for the period of time when the drug first kicks in until it wears off. As a result, time will appear to pass very quickly and you will not recall much of what happened. Many people remember nothing at all. So it may, indeed, appear as if you were “asleep” during the procedure.