Are you considering dental care in Guatemala? Have you put off going to the dentist because your fear overwhelms you? Almost half of all people admit to some level of fear and apprehension when it comes to dental treatment. You may not be aware of how far modern dentistry has come since your last frightening or uncomfortable experience. There are a number of helpful things you can do to reduce anxiety as you consider your dental trip to Guatemala.
- Finding the right compassionate and attentive dental provider
- Oral sedation to calm your nerves
- Inhaled sedation (laughing gas, i.e. nitrous oxide) to relieve anxiety during the procedure
- IV (intravenous) sedation to relieve anxiety during the procedure
Is Intravenous Sedation right for you?
Intravenous sedation may be the perfect solution for you. At the Guatemala Dental Guide, the official dental guide of Guatemala, our goal is to help find the right dentist for you. We want to connect you with the best dentist, who will provide you with superb dental work and ensure that you are comfortable and as pain-free as possible.
Intravenous sedation is accomplished by a drug administered through an injection (just a tiny pin prick) in the back of your hand to make you feel like you are asleep, although you will actually remain conscious, and can follow the dentist’s instructions — but the feeling of relaxation is so profound that you are unlikely to remember much about the procedure. As a result, time will appear to pass very quickly, and you will be out of the chair before you know it, the whole time free from anxiety, and without a memory to disturb your dreams.
Sedation for medical care is not something new. The ancient Greeks used mixtures of root herbs and alcohol as sedatives. The Incas used cocoa leaves for their numbing effect. The modern era of sedation with ether and nitrous oxide for dentistry dates as far back as the 1840’s — the beginning of anesthesia in medicine and dentistry. Intravenous Sedation is similar to the method for drawing blood that was first introduced in the USA around 1930.
You will want to understand that there is a significant difference between Intravenous (conscious) Sedation and general anesthesia (unconscious sedation) used for invasive surgical procedures. During general anesthesia, you are completely asleep and cannot be aroused — not even by painful stimulation, and it requires breathing support, plus an anesthesiologist is needed to monitor your vital signs. During IV (conscious) sedation you are not “asleep” but rather in a much safer and more comfortable “semi-awake” state of reduced anxiety.
You will still need your gums numbed, and if fear of injections is an issue, you will not be numbed until the IV sedation has fully kicked in, and you will very probably be relaxed enough at that point not to care. IV Sedation is highly effective and is also highly reliable, and can be tailored to meet the individual patient’s needs. Safety is always our first concern. We recommend only the leading providers to ensure your safety.
During the sedation, you will be closely and continuously monitored by the dentist and staff members, using electronic equipment that shows blood pressure, heart rate, the amount of oxygen in the blood and, often, your heart function on an EKG monitor. After the procedure is over, you will not be released until it is safe for you to leave the dentist’s office.