An estimated one-third of Canadians experience a strong fear of undergoing dental treatment. Whether it is a routine cleaning or a more complicated procedure, in many cases this anxiety is enough to deter them from visiting a dentist. If this is the case for you, choosing a dental anesthesia specialist can help you receive dental care.
What is general anesthesia?
General anesthesia is the administration of general anesthetic agents (usually a combination of intravenous drugs and inhaled gasses) so that the patient is unconscious and unable to respond to surgical stimuli
What is deep sedation?
With deep sedation, the patient is unconscious and cannot be aroused but can respond to repeated physical stimuli. During deep sedation the patient breathes on their own and maintains some protective reflexes. Sleep dentistry usually refers to deep sedation and only dental anesthesiologists, oral surgeons, and medical anesthesiologists are trained and qualified to administer this level of sedation.
Who can perform anesthesia in the dental office?
The governing body for dentists in Ontario, the Royal College of Dental Surgeons in Ontario (RCDSO), has a number of requirements to ensure patient safety when it comes to using any type of anesthesia or sedation. In order to become a certified anesthesia provider, the individual must complete a formal multi-year residency training and the dental office must pass continual inspections. Only practitioners with formal anesthesia training (Dental Anesthesiologists, Oral Surgeons, Medical Anesthesiologists) are qualified to perform deep sedation and general anesthesia in a dental office.