When Should I Choose Dental Sedation?

In dentistry, sedation is used in a number of different cases, from patients who require extensive restorative work to those who experience fear and anxiety at the prospect of visiting the dentist. With the goal of making your visit more pleasant and your procedure more comfortable, sedation dentistry has helped many patients receive dental care that they might otherwise choose not to receive. Today, we explore the advantage of dental sedation, and why you might choose it to help improve your oral health.

The Point of Sedation Dentistry

Despite the fact that sedatives are involved, sedation dentistry does not typically put you to sleep during your procedure. On the contrary, the point is merely to calm your nerves and help you remain in a relaxed state while we restore your smile.

In most cases, the sedative can be administered as a gas (nitrous oxide, for mild sedation) or as a pill or liquid (oral sedation, for more moderate results). Patients with severe dental phobia, however, may benefit more from intravenous (IV) sedation, which offers the most potent relaxation effects while allowing you to remain conscious.

What’s the Difference with IV Sedation?

Because IV sedation is delivered directly into the bloodstream, its effects become noticeable quickly, and you will remain extremely relaxed throughout your entire procedure. You will still remain conscious and able to respond to prompts and questions, and your level of sedation can be adjusted accordingly. However, because the sedative is potent, you will have to take the rest of the day off to recuperate, and you will need to bring a responsible adult with you to drive you home after your appointment.


Dr. Shawn Hofkes and the staff at Cerritos Dental Surgery are highly qualified to address complex issues, including those that require oral surgery to correct. To schedule an appointment or consultation with Dr. Hofkes, contact us today by calling 562-584-4082. We proudly serve patients of all ages from Cerritos, Lakewood, Long Beach, Buena Park, and all surrounding communities.