Sedation Dentistry

"It was the best dental visit I've ever had"  We have heard this several times from our patients after using Sedation for their appointments.

 Imagine undergoing complex dental treatment, like a smile improvement, a root canal or an extraction. When your treatment is complete, you have little recollection of the time it took, the noise, or the procedure itself. We are pleased to offer our patients the option of comfortable, safe, and effective sedation dentistry. Patients who benefit from sedation dentistry have:

  • A fear or anxiety of being at the dentist
  • A hard time sitting still for long periods of time
  • A hard time getting (and staying) numb from anesthetics


What is Sedation Dentistry?

Sedation dentistry allows Dr. Donovan to provide a variety of dental treatments for patients who experience anxiety when visiting the dentist. There are several benefits to sedation dentistry, including:

  • Often little memory of undergoing the procedure
  • Decreased sense of time while under sedation
  • Reduced fear or anxiety during treatment

Patients who have undergone a procedure using sedation dentistry will tell you it is a simple, relaxing way to experience dentistry.

I am nervous about being unconscious. What level of sedation is used?

There is no need to be nervous about having sedation dentistry at our practice.  Although you may fall asleep and even forget about your time with us, you are never actually "unconscious".  Also, you are never alone.  There will always be a dental assistant present while you are under sedation.


  • Mild Sedation — Anxiolysis is the lightest form of sedation dentistry and is often used for patients with mild anxiety, longer procedures, or more complex situations. Mild sedation is usually administered orally. You remain awake or very sleepy throughout the entire procedure and are able to breathe on your own, but you will feel a great sense of relaxation. Patients typically recover from anxiolysis sedation within a few hours after the procedure is complete. Nitrous oxide inhalation (laughing gas) is another form of mild to moderate sedation that results in relaxation during treatment.

How are sedatives administered?

  • Inhalation — Nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, is the most frequently used method for easing mild to moderate anxiety. Recovery is quick, so you can resume your normal activities immediately.
  • Oral — A deeper form of dental sedation.  You will be given two different prescriptions which, taken the night before your appointment and about an hour before your appointment, will have you fully relaxed by the time you arrive at our office.  You may sleep but will never be unconscious.  You will need a driver before and after this appointment.

Please contact our practice to schedule a consultation, learn more about sedation dentistry, and find out which sedation dentistry method may be right for you.