Anesthesia & Sedation FAQs

Frequently Asked Anesthesia/Sedation Questions in Newark, & Middletown DE

Anesthesia is an essential part of every oral surgery procedure, and thankfully, there are a wide variety of choices available to us today. We can block pain, calm nerves, and even give you a restful sleep while we carry out your procedure.

Oral surgeons are trained and qualified in all types of anesthesia and have spent at least four years in residency in a hospital, learning how to evaluate, deliver, and monitor patients under anesthesia. We’ve created this guide to help answer any questions you may have regarding your anesthesia options.

What are my dental sedation options?

As your top oral surgeon in Middletown and Newark, we offer a spectrum of sedation options to ensure the most comfortable care possible.

  • Local Anesthetics
  • Nitrous Oxide
  • IV Sedation
  • General Anesthesia

What’s the most common form of anesthesia in oral surgery?

Local anesthetics, such as lidocaine, are the most common form of anesthesia in oral surgery procedures. They are administered directly to the surgical site and numb the tissue so that you do not feel any pain. For some minor procedures, such as soft tissue and simple extractions, a local anesthetic is all that is typically needed to get the job done.

What are the different types of oral sedation?

Commonly known as laughing gas, nitrous oxide is mixed with oxygen and administered through a breathing mask. This causes our patients to be conscious but relaxed during the procedure. Laughing gas provides some pain relief but is not comprehensive. It is used in conjunction with local anesthesia for total pain control.

What is IV sedation?

IV sedation, or twilight sedation, is very comfortable and doesn’t involve a lengthy recovery phase like general anesthesia. With twilight sedation, our patients are awake—or drifting in and out of sleep—for the procedure but relaxed and calm and may have no memory of the surgery when it’s over. This type of sedation is administered through an IV in our office. It is a safe and very effective way to perform procedures on patients who have anxiety about surgery. IV Sedation is suitable for most oral surgery procedures.

How is general anesthesia different from IV sedation?

General anesthesia has a longer recovery period than twilight sedation, requiring several hours for it to wear off. However, it is the preferred choice for some conditions that don’t otherwise allow for adequate anesthesia. For patients that aren’t at risk of needing ventilators and don’t necessarily need complete muscle relaxation, we can perform general anesthesia in our office to eliminate pain and anxiety. For procedures, such as jaw surgery, and patients with serious health conditions, we recommend anesthesia be administered in a hospital for safety reasons.

How safe is anesthesia?

Your safety is our top priority. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons have an excellent safety record in anesthesia, as the training for anesthesia during oral surgery residency is very extensive, more so than for any other health specialist, with the exception of anesthesiologists.

Can I eat when I have IV sedation or anesthesia?

No. It’s important that you fast before an oral surgery that requires general anesthesia or IV sedation. Do not consume food or drink 8 hours prior to your procedure if you are having IV (twilight) sedation or general anesthesia.

Will I need a ride if I have IV sedation or anesthesia?

Yes. You will need an adult to accompany you to your appointment and drive you home after having undergone IV or general sedation. For patient safety, you cannot take public transportation or a ride service (Taxi, Uber, Lyft, etc.).  The time allotted for your surgery and recovery may vary but plan on being in the office for approximately 1 ½ hours.  You cannot drive an automobile for at least 24 hours following your surgery.  No one under the age of 18 may serve as your escort day of surgery. Any patient under the age of 18-years-old must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.  We will not get started on your procedure if you do not have someone with you to drive you home.

How uncomfortable will I be while I’m under anesthesia?

Your comfort and care is our top priority. We will make you comfortable before, during, and after your procedure, using the discussed anesthesia plan. If you have any concerns about an upcoming procedure, please give us a call. We are here to answer any questions you may have and ensure the best experience possible.

Will my insurance cover the costs of anesthesia?

Most insurance plans cover anesthesia, but we know the importance of checking your plan and making sure of the details before moving forward with your procedure. We consider it our job to help you navigate your insurance plan, so you don’t have to figure it out on your own. We make every effort to keep you informed of all costs upfront while ensuring you get the most comfortable care possible.

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