There are quite a number of people who suffer from excessive anxiety when going to the dentist. Some also have actual physical hindrances that prevent them from getting dental work done, such as having a severe gagging reflex, or having limited jaw movement. If you are one of them, then you might be looking for a sedation dentist to help you. A sedation dentist will be able to administer drugs that will help you have relaxing and pain-free dental treatments. Be cautioned however that undergoing sedation of any kind can be dangerous, and can have adverse effects if proper procedures are not exercised. Follow the steps below to help you in selecting a sedation dentist who is right for you.
1. Sedation dentists need special permits to operate, and they must undergo specific training to receive these. You can ask the dentist or the dental practice directly, or check with your local State Dental Board if the dentist has certifications in the following courses:
a. Adult Sedation Dentistry
b. IV Sedation Certification
c. Pediatric Sedation Dentistry
d. Single-dose Sedation and Nitrous Oxide
2. Continuous education is also a must for sedation dentists, and you must check that the dentist has re-certifications in the required training.
3. Assess the dentists level of experience – finding a dentist with years of experience with sedation dentistry will help you feel more confident.
4. Once you are satisfied with the dentists qualifications, it is time to have a consultation. In the consultation, you must assess the following to help you make your decision:
a. Location: Is the dentist’s practice near your area, and will you be able to arrange for transport if far away?
b. Treatment Plan: Ensure that the dentist gives you a detailed treatment plan outlining the specific treatment required, timeframe, costs and insurance codes.
c. Insurance: Check if the recommended treatment is covered by your insurance, and also verify if the dentist participates in your insurance plan. Are you prepared to pay for any out-of-pocket costs?
d. Schedule and Hours of Practice: Will the dentist be available when you are ready to have the treatment? Will follow-up appointments be suitable to your schedule?
e. Communication: Are you happy with the way the dentist communicated and demonstrated his or her quality of care to you? Will the dentist, and the practice staff be available to talk to when you have questions?
f. Hygiene: You can usually assess how a dentist works by the level of hygiene evident in the dental practice. Check if the practice is clean. Does the dentist wear gloves, and a face mask when examining you? Does the dentist wash hands after, and are the dental tools sterilized?
Gather all your information to assess if you have found the right sedation dentist. Finding one you are comfortable with is very important, and if you have any doubts at all, then you should definitely see a different sedation dentist to give you another opinion. It is always important to ensure that you are in the right hands, especially when it comes to your health.