What Exactly is Sedation Dentistry?
Letting minor dental issues develop into major problems that are much more costly-to-repair are too many Americans are going without regular dental health care and that’s the perfect recipe for this very disaster. It can be said that one of the most important changes in the world of dentistry is that sedation dentistry is so much more readily available since dental anxiety or unusual sensitivity to pain can result in people not getting regular checkups.
Until the past few decades, you may not have heard much about it but it has been around for a long, long time. Even though it was actually another dentist who introduced the use of ether as a form of general anesthesia, dating back to the 1840s when Connecticut dentist Horace Wells first experimented with and introduced the use of nitrous oxide, sometimes called laughing gas, this sedation technique along with many more, is still used today.
The range of techniques and medications used has broadened, and great strides have been made in providing safe administration of dental sedation since that 19th century progressive thought leadership in the field of dentistry and pain management and both the world of dentistry and the world of medicine at large have an excellent understanding of the risks associated with all types of sedation and anesthesia in the 21st century.
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The fact that these are guidelines and not legal requirements for practicing dentists is something that the general public should understand. In the United States, the regulatory responsibility for the practice of dentistry lies with the individual states while some states have recently adopted specific laws that govern the practice of sedation dentistry as a service to the residents of the state in order to afford them the assurance of safety in the use of this increasingly popular dental service. Individual states are not bound to adoption of the ADA guidelines since they can define their own levels of sedation as well as the training, experience, and accreditation process that will be used which means that the ADA is not highly influential in the individual states’ decision-making process.
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Some of the difficulty lies in the fact that there are different levels of sedation dentistry available, and that the number and names of those levels can vary among states where regulations are in place and the answer can also be specific dental procedure or procedures being performed. Although, as you start considering sedation dentistry for yourself or a family member, this basic information can be helpful to you.