The Benefits and Risks of Oral Sedatives for Dental Patients

At our Reston cosmetic dentistry practice, Smiles by Myles, we are no strangers to dental anxiety. Indeed, many of our patients have experienced some degree of dental anxiety at some point in their lives. While our compassionate staff strives to make every patient feel welcome, calm, and relaxed, we do understand that some patients experience anxiety just at the thought of undergoing dental care of any type. For some patients, the stress and anxiety that just thinking about going to the dentist causes is enough to make them delay care until the pain can no longer be ignored.

Unfortunately, putting off routine dental care, such as professional dental cleanings and examinations, can lead to major damage to the teeth and gums. When caught early enough, many dental problems can be addressed before they cause irreversible damage. If you are putting off dental care that you desperately need, you may benefit from sedation dentistry. For our patients suffering from dental anxiety in Reston, sedation dentistry can help alleviate feelings of anxiety and fear before, during, and after dental treatment.


Most patients are good candidate for oral sedation. Indeed, if you are experiencing anxiety or fear at the thought of undergoing dental treatment, there is a very good chance that you will be an ideal candidate for oral sedation dentistry. For our patients in Reston, oral sedation can make the process of undergoing multiple dental treatments within one dental visit relatively easy, painless, and comfortable.

Patients who find undergoing dental treatment difficult because of involuntary body movements, a sensitive gag reflex, past traumatic dental experiences, a fear of needles, dental anxiety and fear, or who simply desire to undergo multiple treatments in a short span of time can benefit from oral sedation dentistry. To learn whether you are a suitable candidate for sedation dentistry, please schedule a personal consultation at Smiles by Myles today.

However, if you are often tired or irritable and are a sleeper who snores, chokes, or gasps during the night, you may be experiencing sleep apnea. Keeping a log of your sleeping habits or recording yourself while you sleep can be helpful in determining if you suffer from sleep apnea. If you suspect you may have sleep apnea, you should see your doctor immediately.


A benefit of oral sedation dentistry is that patients are able to follow commands and answer questions while undergoing treatment. While patients are conscious enough to answer questions during treatment, they will remain comfortable, relaxed, and anxiety free. This is crucial as many patients are not able to undergo dental treatment without oral sedation.

Many patients are simply overwhelmed by the stress, anxiety, and fear that results at just the thought of undergoing dental treatment. Through oral sedation dentistry, we are able to provide patients with a comfortable, relaxing way to receive the dental care they need without having to first experience fear. Sadly, even dental cleanings, x-rays, and routine examinations are enough to cause fear and anxiety in some patients.

Medication can be taken at home before treatment so that patients arrive for their dental appointments feeling calm, relaxed, and free from anxiety and fear. In fact, as a result of oral sedation dentistry, many patients do not even remember undergoing dental treatment. This is especially helpful for patients who have experienced traumatic dental experiences in the past.

As with any treatment, there is risk involved. To minimize any possible risk, we will perform a drug interaction test before administering any oral sedation medications. We always carefully monitor each patient during oral sedation so that we can ensure their continued health and safety.

To learn more about oral sedation benefits and risks, please contact Smiles by Myles today.


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