Overcome Fear Of The Dentist With IV Sedation Sleep Dentistry

iv sedation sleep dentistryDoes the idea of going to the dentist strike fear in your heart? If so, you're not alone. Dentophobia, or fear of dentists, is extremely common, and it affects people of all ages. The compassionate and caring team at Allred Dental offers a variety of techniques to help put your mind at ease while visiting our San Marcos dental office for dental services.

Whether you need a routine dental cleaning or a more involved procedure, Dr. Jeffrey Allred and his skilled team of professionals offer IV sedation, also called "sleep dentistry," to help you feel relaxed. Dr. Allred, a Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology/Implant Dentistry, offers several types of sedation dentistry and can recommend the best one for you. Read on to learn more about the IV sleep sedation option and how Allred Dental can help you keep your teeth in tip-top shape.

What is sedation dentistry? 

Most people have heard of laughing gas or nitrous oxide sedation. But for those with extreme dental anxiety and for more invasive procedures, Dr. Jeffrey Allred may suggest IV sedation. Intravenous medication is administered directly through the veins during the appointment, which can be helpful for patients undergoing a lengthy procedure such as a root canal, tooth extraction, or other types of oral surgery. The dose can be increased or decreased as needed, and patients usually come out of the anesthesia soon after the IV is removed. IV sedation is highly beneficial for those who suffer from anxiety and wish to remain relaxed and calm while their dental issues are being treated.

How can sedation IV benefit me?

In general, IV sedation can be used to assist patients with severe dental worries, to keep patients feeling less stress during surgical treatments, and to help those who have very little tolerance for pain or an intense gag reflex.

Extreme dentophobia. Dentophobia, or fear of dentists, is a real condition, and IV sedation can help patients feel less nervous or anxious. Those who have a low level of fear might be better candidates for a milder form of sedation, such as laughing gas or oral conscious alternatives. For those who have dental fears as the result of a bad prior experience or other reasons, Allred Dental can provide you with the most appropriate option.

Calming effect. During lengthy procedures, IV sedation may help keep patients calm. IV sedation is generally the preferred method for surgical tooth extractions and dental implant procedures. Gum surgery to treat advanced periodontal disease could also call for IV sedation, as incisions are made into the gumline to address deeper areas.

Low pain tolerance or severe gag reflex. Some men and women have a severe gag reflex or very little tolerance for pain. In these cases, IV sedation could be beneficial even during routine dental cleanings. When in a relaxed state, the gag reflex can be significantly reduced, enabling Dr. Jeffrey Allred and his team of dental hygienists to ensure your teeth and mouth remain healthy.

What to expect from IV sedation dentistry

During your consultation with Allred Dental in San Marcos, CA, Dr. Jeffrey Allred will review all the details about IV sedation. In preparation for your treatment, avoid food or drinks a few hours before your appointment time. You may also need to avoid taking particular prescription or nonprescription drugs before your IV sedation to prevent an adverse interaction.

To begin, a tube will be inserted in your vein, which will distribute the solution directly into your bloodstream. IV sedation will take effect quickly. The dosage may be adjusted throughout your treatment based on your specific needs. Local anesthesia may also be used to numb a particular region in your mouth before Dr. Allred carries out your treatment. Based on the dose of IV sedation that was utilized, you will be in a "twilight" state and able to follow normal cues. However, you will probably not recall what happened during your treatment. Once your appointment is finished, the medication will be stopped, and you will soon return to full consciousness. People are typically a bit foggy right after their treatment, but begin to return to normal in a matter of minutes.

Candidates for IV sedation

Before sedation is administered, Dr. Jeffrey Allred will perform a consultation to determine which form of IV sedation is best. You will need to tell Dr. Allred about your medical history, which includes any current conditions, allergies, and medications you are taking, including vitamins and supplements. This is so any side effects and possible interactions can be avoided. During this time, Dr. Jeffrey Allred will discuss his recommendations for sedation, determine if you are a candidate, and give pre-sedation instructions. It’s best for women who are pregnant to wait until after delivery to undergo sedation and any lengthy dental procedures.


Most San Marcos, CA, patients, recover quickly after sedation dentistry. The team at Allred Dental will review in detail what you can expect, typical side effects, and how long you should wait before eating. Recovery can vary based on the treatment you received. Follow all of your dentist's suggestions and watch for any abnormal signs of a reaction or other complications.

Let’s put your dental fears to rest

If sedation dentistry sounds like it could be beneficial for you, we encourage you to contact Allred Dental in San Marcos, CA, to schedule a consultation and review your options. At Allred Dental, our highly skilled team screens patients to ensure they are good candidates before receiving sedation dentistry. We explain the steps in detail, so you are prepared, relaxed, and don't put off essential dentist visits. Call Allred Dental today to schedule your appointment.

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