Anesthesia for Dentistry

As specially trained professionals working in a unique newly-equipped clinic, we are specialists in anesthesia for dentistry. We understand that many individuals have difficulty receiving treatment awake. In some cases, it is physically impossible to give or receive care while awake. Some patients have had a bad experience and are afraid to undergo treatment with much stress, dental fear and anxiety. The result is some people avoid the dentist, and their health suffers. But this doesn’t need to continue.

While being awake is the most common method for dental treatment, it does not always work nor is it always the best option. There are a significant number of individuals who avoid regular dental care, cancel or miss appointments, or have psychological and physiological conditions which make being awake at the dentist very difficult or impossible. There are many reasons why more traditional conscious dentistry can be difficult or impractical to receive as a patient. In addition, we feel it’s a more comfortable path to receiving dental care. In fact, about one-third of the adult Canadian population would agree that some form of sedation or anesthesia would have been beneficial as a part of dental treatment.

If you have been avoiding the dentist or have found conventional methods of dental care to be difficult or impossible, please contact us.

Our dental services include but are not limited to:

  • Restorative – Fillings, Crowns, Bridges
  • Nerve treatment – Root canals
  • Tooth removal
  • Cleanings
  • Children’s dentistry

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it Safe?

  • Anesthesia and sedation performed for typical dental procedures are very safe. Although the risk is not zero, as some level of risk is associated with every activity, we make anesthesia safe by implementing rigorous standards, training, and incorporating a team of qualified personnel.
  • This team includes you the patient, or you as the parent. To make this procedure as safe as possible, it is imperative that you follow the preoperative and postoperative instructions.
  • We are Ottawa’s sole Dental Anesthesia specialist clinic. The safety record of Dental Anesthesiologists and their clinics are second to none.

Are there different levels of Anesthesia

  • Conscious Sedation
    • Conscious sedation is the most widely available method of sedation in dentistry.
    • Nitrous oxide (laughing gas), sedative pills, and IV sedation fall into this category.
    • These options are commonly available at general dentist offices. Although the individual has difficulty remembering treatment, they were in fact conscious and responsive for the entire treatment. This method of sedation is not always appropriate for the patient or the dental treatment.
  • Unconscious Sedation and General Anesthesia
    • Also known as Deep Sedation and General Anesthesia, only practitioners with formal multiyear residency training and education in anesthesia are permitted to practice this type of anesthesia.
    • These individuals are:
      • Dental Anesthesiologists
      • Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons
      • Medical Anesthesiologists
    • Multiple drugs (Intravenous and/or inhaled) are used to achieve this level of anesthesia and the depth can be tailored to the dental procedure and patient needs.

What happens at my first appointment?

  • The first appointment is for us to determine your level of health by reviewing your medical history, performing an anesthetic consult, a physical and vital exam, and reviewing your dental and anesthetic needs. When necessary, we will consult with your referring dentist and/or your physician
  • Depending on your comfort level, we may take radiographs to aid the treatment plan
  • Please arrive early to complete the medical history questionnaire
  • The process of treatment under anesthesia will be explained and you will explained how to prepare for you or your child’s visit

How should I prepare for my first procedure?

Following these instructions are mandatory to keep your treatment as safe as possible. Failure to follow the instructions introduces unnecessary risk and will result in cancelation of the appointment without exceptions. We may add additional instructions during consult.

  • All patients must be feeling their best before treatment. Please inform us of any health changes as soon as possible. This includes but not limited to: coughs, colds, fever, vomiting, diarrhea, sputum, sickness, sudden worsening of any pre-existing medical conditions, and any unwell feeling.
  • All patients must be fasted according to the standards set forth by the RCDSO and ASA.
    • Absolutely no solid foods or liquids other than plain water for 8 hours before treatment.
      • Gum, Jello, Toothpaste count as solids
    • Absolutely no water for 3 hours before treatment
      • We recommend drinking water 3 hours before treatment to avoid thirst. Hydration will be given intravenously during treatment.
    • Unless otherwise instructed, it is absolutely crucial to follow this to avoid unnecessary risk during anesthesia.
    • Please be extra-vigilant of children to ensure the above requirements are met.
  • All patients must have a responsible adult escort home via car or taxi. Presence of escort and method of travel will be confirmed prior to treatment.
  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing. Bring their favourite blanket.

What can I expect during recovery?

  • Most patients regain alertness soon after stopping anesthesia but remain sleepy or groggy for the next few hours.
  • When deemed safe, you may be escorted by a responsible adult directly home via private car or taxi
  • Rest in the company of your escort, drink lots of fluids, and avoid exercise or activities requiring balance.
  • Do not make any financial, business, retail, or decisions involving money
  • Do not operate heavy machinery or vehicle for the next 24hrs