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Sedation; a guide from Kings Dental

Worried about an upcoming dental appointment?

At Kings Dental Subiaco, we take dental phobias seriously and can offer our patients dental sedation to help them relax and get the dental care that they deserve.

In this short guide, our team at Kings Dental, dentist in Subiaco, discusses the sedative medications that we use at our surgery, to help you determine if they may be of help at your next dental appointment.

What is dental sedation?

In short, dental sedation or sedation dentistry involves the use of medications to help patients relax.

Our team at Kings Dental, dentist in Subiaco, use dental sedation to alleviate the anxiety of nervous dental patients and may also choose to use it in instances where the procedure may be lengthy, such as the fitting of dental implants.

Of course, before you undertake any kind of sedation with our team, you should check with your doctor that it will not be detrimental to your health.

Nitrous oxide

Nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, is administered via a mask and allows you to feel relaxed and at ease while our team works on your mouth.

But, as you are not fully sedated, you will be able to respond to our team's instructions, such as opening your mouth wider etc.

Oral sedation

Oral sedation usually involves the taking of a pill before the treatment begins. While there may be a variation in the name, it is almost always a barbiturate based medication, which can create a feeling of tranquillity and relaxation.

However, this can be a bit more disorientating than nitrous oxide and you may need some help getting home and should not operate heavy machinery for 24 hours.

Advantages of sedation

Sedation offers you the chance to forget the procedure, which is a benefit if you have a dental phobia.

It can also help our team concerning lengthier procedures, as we can simply administer the sedative and proceed with the treatment without needing to stop, which may make the treatment go more smoothly and quickly. It also removes the need for a local anaesthetic.

Potential complications

There are a medical issues that can arise due to the use of sedation in dentistry, but they are quite rare.

Breathing issues can occur, especially if the person who has been sedated also suffers from severe asthma or is taking a medication that can cause respiratory depression, such as opiate-based pain relief.

The use of nitrous oxide can also cause severe dizziness which, once again, is more likely if you suffer from vertigo or an anxiety disorder. It can also cause issues with concentration in the short term and may cause you to fall asleep. Ergo, if you have any sensitivity to nitrous oxide, you must tell us before undertaking it as a medication with our team.

In the case of oral sedation, as mentioned before, we tend to use a barbiturate based medication which can lead to nausea, vomiting, headaches and can even set off other rare conditions, such as an attack of acute intermittent porphyria, which can be life-threatening.

If you are not sure about the safety of using barbiturates with your dental care, please talk to our team at Kings Dental Subiaco and your doctor.


All treatment carries risks. Individual consultation is required with one of our practitioners to ensure that the treatment is right for you.


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