The Pros & Cons Of Anesthesia

The Pros & Cons Of Anesthesia

If you ever feel anxious on your way to the dentist, know that you’re not alone. Many children, teens, and even adults fear the pain often associated with dental procedures. However, there are multiple ways to help reduce this fear, one being dental anesthesia.

There are numerous levels of sedation that can be used on a patient. These range from minimal sedation where you are still awake but calm and relaxed, up to general anesthesia where you are completely “asleep,” or unconscious. General anesthesia is necessary to perform surgical procedures that can cause significant pain or generate a stress response, but you’ll usually get the choice of what anesthesia method you want to use. It’s highly recommended that you discuss the pros and cons of each method with your dentist to figure out what’s best for your unique situation.


The Pros:

  • Dental anesthesia blocks all pain signals and sensations during the procedure, making it little to no pain for the patient.
  • It’s quick and efficient; The area being worked on will be completely numb in minutes.
  • Without anesthesia, dentists may have a hard time dealing with the body’s physiological stress response during the procedure.
  • Using anesthesia can combine what otherwise may have been multiple appointments into only one.
  • Relieves pain, anxiety, discomfort, and fear from dental procedures.

The Cons:

  • General anesthesia often requires chest x-rays, lab tests, and an ECG before the procedure, which can be time-consuming and expensive.
  • Also requires special-trained personnel to be in attendance to monitor the anesthesia, which can be very costly.
  • Patients are not allowed to eat/drink for at least 6-8 hours before the procedure.
  • Using any dental anesthesia may cause nausea, vomiting, headaches, sweating, shivering, confusion, or hallucination.
  • Other side effects may include: delay in the return of normal memory functioning, slurred speech, dry mouth or sore throat, dizziness, tiredness, numbness, and lockjaw.

At Vosh, we prioritize your health and happiness, so we’ll make sure to go over all your dental anesthesia choices if anesthesia is absolutely necessary. Schedule your appointment today!

There are three main types of dental anesthesia: local, sedation, and general anesthesia. Local is the most common form used in dentistry, but general anesthesia may be necessary for longer, more invasive procedures that require you to be completely asleep. Local anesthetics make the mouth numb in minutes through a small gumline injection, blocking all pain signals. Sedation is used to offer a full-body calming effect during your procedure, usually administered through “laughing gas.”
Once the medication hits your bloodstream, the effects will kick in extremely fast. Usually, this happens in less than a minute. Most patients report not remembering anything after the anesthetic is administered.
Yes, the most common side effects a patient may experience are nausea, vomiting, headaches, sweating, shivering, confusion, hallucination, slurred speech, dry mouth, sore throat, dizziness, tiredness, numbness, lockjaw, and delay in the return of normal memory functioning. More major, but uncommon side effects are malignant hyperthermia, allergic reaction, nerve damage, seizure, coma, stroke, and low blood pressure. Reactions might be mild or severe and can also include rash, itching, swelling of the tongue, lips, mouth, or throat, and difficulty breathing.

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