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It is no secret that most people are afraid of the dentist. A bad experience during childhood, the sound of the dental handpieces, or just the sole presence of a dentist in a white coat are some of the reasons people express as cause of their fear. One or another are enough to prevent a person from going to his/her dental appointment, elicit a fear response while at the dental office, and some times provoke a reaction to local anesthetics.

People with dental phobia often put off routine care for years or even decades. To avoid it, they’ll put up with gum infections (periodontal disease), pain, or even broken and unsightly teeth. Conscious sedation is a minimally depressed level of consciousness that retains the patient’s ability to independently and continuously maintain an airway and respond appropriately to physical stimulation or verbal command and that is produced by a pharmacological or non-pharmacological method or a combination thereof.  In accord with this particular definition, the drugs and/or techniques used should carry a margin of safety wide enough to render unintended loss of consciousness unlikely.

Conscious sedation might be employed in the anxious patient while performing any procedure in the dental office. Although mostly used for kids, it is also employed with adults rendering the dental appointment more pleasant.

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