How Does Oral Conscious Sedation Dentistry Work?

dentist examines patientSedation dentistry is on the rise, and you may have started to hear more about it. However, what you might not realize is that there are several methods or options when sedating a patient. The two most common are oral conscious sedation dentistry and nitrous oxide sedation.

What’s the Difference Between Oral Conscious & Nitrous Oxide Sedation?

One of the most common types of sedation is nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas. It is administered via a mask and has been in use for many years.

Oral conscious sedation, on the other hand, means you have to take a pill before your appointment or procedure. This will have a sedating effect as the pill releases powerful anti-anxiety medication into your bloodstream. You therefore don’t need to wear a mask and you can also avoid needles or IVs.

Generally, nitrous oxide is a lighter form of sedation, while oral conscious sedation dentistry has deeper effects. With nitrous oxide, you’re often awake, but calm and relaxed. With dental oral conscious sedation, though, patients typically fall asleep during the experience and remember little to nothing about it.

If you have serious dental anxiety or you’re having a more invasive procedure, such as a tooth extraction, then oral conscious sedation dentistry is usually recommended.

Another difference between nitrous oxide and oral conscious sedation is the time it takes to wear off. With nitrous oxide, it’s a few minutes. Oral conscious sedation, on the other hand, takes around 4-6 hours to wear off, which means you’ll always need a driver to drop you off and pick you up post-appointment.

Some other side effects, like feeling groggy or sleepy, nauseous, vomiting, and having dry mouth, are also more severe with oral conscious sedation. They can last for up to 24 hours.

Looking for a Sedation Dentist?

Call Burns Dentistry today. We’ll help you through the anxiety and discomfort of your next appointment or procedure with the right options for sedation, including oral conscious sedation dentistry.


Read What Our Patients Have to Say

Burns Dentistry aims to constantly innovate our treatments and personalize our care based on the unique needs of every patient. Your comfort is a top priority when you visit our dentist office. Read how our patients enjoy their experience with our professional team.

“Excellent dental care and amazing office staff! So caring, thoughtful and so congenial -makes for a great experience!”

The Kennedy's

“I have never been to such a nice dentist office! Everyone is truly kind, gave me a tour, a welcome gift, and they have all the up to date tech. My hygienist, Felicia, was wonderful, knowledgable, and kind. I am truly looking forward to my future appointments.”

A. Babbitt

“I had the best experience at Burns dentistry. From the moment I walked in the receptionist greeted me by my name to when they called me back for my appointment. This was the first dental office that ever gave me a tour of there office which I thought was pretty neat. Office is really nice and clean. Dr. Holtan was very nice and friendly and loved how he took his time on explaining everything to me. So extremely grateful and highly recommend Burns Dentistry.”

B. Garcia

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