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Fear of the dentist is one of the most common fears in the United States. (You may not believe this, but some dentists are afraid of going to the dentist, too.)

In fact, fear of the dentist is one of the top 10 most common fears, according to livescience.com. Yep, dentists are right up there with heights, darkness, spiders, and snakes.

WebMD reported that between 9 and 20 million Americans avoid the dentist completely because of this fear. If you are one of those people or you go to the dentist in spite of your anxiety, we have a solution for your fears — sedation dentistry.

Sedation dentistry is a great way to help you relax so you can receive professional dental care. This is just one of the ways we make your comfort a priority at Pioneer Dental Group in Oregon City.

One step at a time

If you are afraid of the dentist, we understand you are not going to overcome that fear with one visit. We want to help, and we will be with you each step of the way.

Sedation dentistry allows you to relax with the help of nitrous oxide (“laughing gas”) or medication. Both methods are safe and effective.

You may be experiencing dental fear or dental anxiety for a wide variety of reasons.

Some people are afraid of the office environment. You may want to know we have televisions in our patient rooms, and we offer headphones, blankets, and pillows to help you feel more comfortable.

Other people are afraid of needles or the drill, and another group is nervous that they will get a lecture about their oral hygiene. Regardless of the reason for your dental anxiety, sedation dentistry can help you relax and stay calm.

Fear of the dentist is one reason to consider sedation, but it’s not the only reason sedation could help you or someone you love.

Lots of people (children and adults) have trouble sitting still. Some of us are just more active than others. There’s nothing wrong with that, but wiggling in the chair does make cleaning your teeth more difficult.

With sedation, you’ve been able to settle down and stay in place much more easily.

Up to 15 percent of people have what is known as “hypersensitive gag reflex,” according to livescience.com. If you are one of those people, you may not want to go to an office where you know someone will be putting different kinds of tools in your mouth.

With sedation, you and your muscles are more relaxed, making you much less likely to gag during your procedure. You can trust us when we say that we don’t want to gag you, either.

Maybe just thinking about you cleaning or other procedure makes you nervous. What if you had no memory that it happened? Many patients feel like they are sleeping when they undergo sedation. They may not recall the procedure after it’s done, but they still get the same benefit.

Sedation is a great option for these and many other reasons. It helps you as a patient, and it helps the dentist or hygienist who is providing your treatment, too.

Sedation options

Pioneer Dental Group patients have a choice of nitrous oxide and oral conscious sedation. Let’s explain the difference between these types of sedation.

Nitrous oxide, “laughing gas”, is delivered through a mask placed over your nose. By breathing normally, you inhale the gas. As it takes effect, you will feel more at ease and more comfortable during your procedure.

Nitrous oxide works quickly, leaving you feeling more relaxed. You even may feel like you are asleep. When the procedure is over, the sedation wears off in a matter of minutes.

You can leave knowing you’ve had your procedure, and you can go on with your day.

Oral conscious sedation is administered through medication that you swallow. You will take this before your procedure so it has time to take effect.

This type of sedation will leave you feeling groggy and falling asleep is a possibility. In any case, you will be completely relaxed throughout your procedure.

When it’s over, you will need a family member or a friend to take you home. You will want to rest when you get there because this type of sedation takes longer to wear off.

We’re on your side

At Pioneer Dental Group, we want you to receive quality, comfortable dental care. Sedation dentistry can help you deal with your dental fear, and with time, it may help you overcome your anxiety about the dentist.

In the meantime, don’t let your fear affect your oral health. Call us at 503-388-4691 or use our online form to make an appointment at our office in Oregon City.