If the idea of going to the dentist for a procedure brings on feelings of fear or anxiety there are options to ease the anxiety. Oral sedation or oral conscious sedation (OCS) – most often associated with sedation dentistry – produces moderate sedation via oral medication dispensed to the patient before the appointment to diminish awareness of pain, sounds and smells. The patient is instructed to take the medication prior to being driven to the appointment by a responsible caregiver and, once at the appointment, may receive additional medication as needed to ensure comfort.
Oral conscious sedation does not put you asleep like some other forms of anesthesia. You will remain awake during your procedure, but you will be in a heightened state of relaxation. It is also possible that you will not remember part, or all, of your procedure.
Oral conscious sedation is extremely safe and easy. It is much less expensive than other forms of sedation, and you will be able to talk and breathe on your own during the procedure. It also makes long or complex procedures seem shorter, allowing you to have all of your work done in a single visit. As an added precaution a local anesthetic will be given to the area that is being worked on to ensure that there is no pain. You will need to have someone drive you to and from the office if you use oral conscious sedation for your safety.