About Oral-Conscious Sedation
Do you get clammy hands when you walk by a dental office? Do the sounds or smells of a dental office cause anxiety? Do you avoid dental care because of a bad experience? If you answered "yes" to any of these questions, you may be eligible for sedation dentistry. At City Smiles DC, our board-certified dentist, Dr. Stuart Ross, offers oral sedation for your convenience, to help keep you relaxed and calm at your appointment to get the care that you need.
Oral sedation takes the form of a pill or 2 that you consume a few hours or the night before your procedure takes place. By the time you reach our office, you’ll feel relaxed and ready for your treatment. The common misconception is that sedation knocks you out, but with our oral sedation, you will remain conscious, and feel a deep sense of calm and relaxation. We have found that patients, who are afraid of needles, prefer this method of sedation compared to other methods, such as intravenous (IV) sedation, which is administered through a vein in the arm or hand. Swallowing a few pills instead is preferable.
Benefits of Sedation
We utilize sedation dentistry for a variety of reasons, and the most common is to alleviate dental fears and anxiety. If the thought of a dental appointment gives you shivers, it may be time to consider oral sedation to help you.
When it comes to maintaining your oral health, the gateway to your body is through your mouth; if your oral health is poor, it’s possible that it could affect other parts of your body. Some studies have shown that it’s possible for bacterial infections in the mouth to be connected to cardiovascular and respiratory issues. If you’re experiencing bodily issues and visit your primary care doctor, one of the first places they check is in your mouth. If it looks like an infection, they may recommend that you go see your dentist.
Because this connection is so valuable, it’s important to maintain good oral health. If your dental anxiety is preventing you from visiting the dentist, then oral sedation could be the answer. Don’t let your fear stop you from getting the smile you deserve.
"This review only contains a rating"- A.P. / Google / Mar 19, 2017
"I was referred to Dr. Ross for veneers. Wow.....I've never felt so comfortable in the dentist chair until my visit at City Smiles. Dr. Ross and Tina were so professional, warm, and comforting. I had a lengthy procedure - 6 veneers in one day. The technology they offer creates veneers almost instantly. They talked me through every step of the process. I highly recommend Dr. Ross for veneers and plan to use City Smiles for my regular visits."- K.A. / Yelp / Nov 27, 2017
"A completely different experience than I am accustomed to from a dental practice. I have been to two types of dentists before. One has the dentists doing the cleaning and x-rays and just about everything else. The other had a hygienist do the cleaning and the dentist would come in for about 10 seconds and say "You need to brush and floss more". In either case the level of care was probably average. Dr. Ross's office was a completely new experience. Based on his credentials and the scattered gray hair (he seems to have a great humbled sense of humor too), he has been practicing for a long time so he has a lot of experience, but it looks like he keeps up with all of the latest technology and has not stagnated. Some of the equipment is impressive. I am an Engineer so it was interesting to hear about some of it and Dr Ross was excited to show me. Dr. Ross spent more time with me than any other health care provider I have ever seen. He took many close up digital images of my teeth from every angle and used a digital X-Ray machine. He was instantly able to show me exactly where the problems were and it was very clear. I could also see quite clearly that I needed to get a sharper razor. All of the other dentists I have been to look with their eyes and try to explain in words what they are seeing. It might be obvious to them but the pictures really helped me. The hygienist was very professional and thorough. If your hygienist is not referencing X-Rays and close up images as they are cleaning your teeth and gums, they are behind the times. They are flying blind. You might get out of your dentist with a checkup and cleaning for $99.95, but it looks like Earl Sheib cleaned your teeth. By the way, the 1990's called, they want their dentist back.The receptionist staff was friendly and patient. I think with the proliferation of online reviews, many practices are paying more attention to how patients are treated by employees other than just the doctor. I have noticed an improvement at other dentist's/doctor's offices and it is very clear here that it is important. Dr. Ross was forthcoming on the costs of the various procedures I should consider, some of which he could provide and others he could not. Once I saw the pictures and he explained how not fixing certain issues would degrade my teeth faster since the hard enamel is worn or chipped, it made sense what I needed to do. I have had a few crashes/hits that affected my teeth so I was not expecting the best report card, however, I did not feel pressured to do anything at any point. In fact, I left the office without making any follow up appointments. No medical procedure is cheap so there are tough decisions to be made. I will be going back to have some more work done soon though, and will schedule the rest over time. I would rather deal with the issues up front while I am younger than be getting a ton of bridges, root canals, implants ... when I am 75 which would ultimately cost a lot more money. And I will have better looking teeth now. Probably like remodeling the kitchen right after you buy the house or right before you sell it. Do I want a nice smile now or do I want to look good at my funeral? I came in from Rockville to specifically to see Dr. Ross because my wife went to see him based on the great reviews and a recommendation from a friend. She had nothing but good things to say when she came home and had two teeth perfectly repaired. There are plenty of other dentists between my house and the middle of DC but I felt like I needed to re-baseline what I should expect from a dentist. Glad I went. There is a good pastry shop, Paul, right around the corner too. Dirty up all of the work you just had done. 3% of the reason I trekked in to DC. And no matter what they say, those donuts are not "oven baked" they are deep fried. Maybe I should write a review of Paul while I am at it."- R.B. / Google / Nov 12, 2017
"Amazing experience. No pain, clean teeth, lots of knowledge, high tech without the price. Don't forget the M&M dispensers everywhere!!! Keeps you coming back!"- M.R. / Yelp / Oct 24, 2017
"Dr. Ross and his team are wonderful. Highly recommend checking them out!"- B.S. / Google / Oct 22, 2017
What to Expect
Before oral-conscious sedation is given, the patient should meet with a dentist to thoroughly review the patient’s medical history, current medications, and any drug allergies. If it’s determined that a patient is a good candidate, the dentist will go over sedation options. If oral-conscious sedation is chosen, the pill will be taken 1 hour prior to the procedure. The pill will produce a tranquil state and the feeling will last throughout the procedure and several hours afterwards, so the patient will require an escort to drive him or her home. Since the patient is still conscious throughout the procedure, he or she should be alert enough to hear the dentist and respond to instructions. If a patient feels groggy and falls asleep, a simple shake should rouse the patient to wakefulness.
After oral-conscious sedation is taken, a patient should not drive or operate heavy machinery for 24 hours following the procedure. In some cases, the patient may remember little or nothing about the particular dental procedure, though memory will be intact for the rest of the day’s events. Since a pain-reliever, such as a local anesthetic, is usually administered prior to the procedure, most patients report little or no pain or discomfort after the dental work. For the most part, oral-conscious sedatives are considered quite safe and most patients can tolerate them well with no side effects. In some instances, patients may feel nauseous or vomit after taking the sedative.
Depending on the patient’s insurance coverage, some, if not all, of the cost for an oral-conscious sedative can be covered. Our office can check ahead of time to see what’s covered and what’s not if the patient provides their insurance information.
Plan Your Procedure
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Easy, Painless Dentistry
At City Smiles DC in Washington, DC, we understand when our patients feel helpless or fearful about dental treatments and procedures. We are dedicated to helping you relax for your treatment, and that includes access to safe and effective oral sedation. Dr. Ross is a top sleep dentist in the Greater Washington, DC area, including Arlington, VA and Bethesda, MD. Relieve your dental anxiety at City Smiles DC, and call to schedule your consultation with Dr. Ross, and restore your smile for a more glamorous you.