Sedation dentistry is great for people who feel nervous about going to the dentist. With sedatives, the sights, sounds, and smells of the dentist’s office fade away, and you feel relaxed during the procedure. Dentists can work without worrying about anxious patients acting up.

If you need sedation for dental work, you’ll need someone to drive you home afterward. This is because the sedatives take time to wear off. So, how long does dental sedation last? Read on to find out.

What is the Duration for Sedation to Work?

You might get the medicine through a tube in your vein (IV) or a shot in your muscle. You will start feeling sleepy and calm pretty fast. If you have to swallow the medicine, it will take about 30 to 60 minutes to start working.

Do You Feel Pain with Oral Sedation?

Oral sedation doesn’t cause pain, and it has many benefits for easing dental procedures. It helps you relax and feel less scared during dental visits. Because you are calm, the dentist can often finish the work quicker, meaning you might need fewer visits.

What Drug Is Used for IV Sedation in Dentistry?

Midazolam and Diazepam are the most used drugs in sedation dentistry. Some other IV drugs include Meperidine (Demerol), Morphine, Butorphanol (Stadol), Nalbuphine (Nubari), Fentanyl (Sublimaze), Pentazocine (Talwin), and Pentobarbital Sodium.

How Long Does Sedation Take to Wear Off?

The duration of wearing off for dental sedation can vary. It depends on which type of sedation you pick and how your body reacts to it. Generally, if you have nitrous oxide, you might feel better within 15 to 30 minutes and can drive yourself home afterward. But if you choose oral or IV sedation, it might take about 24 hours before you feel completely back to normal.

Factors that Affect the Recovery Duration of Dental Anesthesia

There are certain factors that decide the time duration of your dental anesthesia to wear off completely. These factors are:

Types of Dental Sedation

Different types of dental sedation affect you in different ways and for different lengths of time. These kinds include:

  • Nitrous Oxide: Also called laughing gas, it’s a mild sedative you breathe in through a mask. It works quickly and wears off in about 5 to 10 minutes after you stop breathing it.
  • Oral Sedation: You take a pill before your appointment. It can make you drowsy for several hours, and it might take a while longer to feel completely normal again.
  • IV Sedation: This sedation goes into your vein through a tiny needle. It works fast and can last for hours. You will need some time to recover fully afterward.
  • General Anesthesia: This is the strongest type of sedation. It puts you to sleep through an IV. It can take several hours for the effects to wear off completely, and you will need time to recover fully afterward.

Additional Factors

  • Dosage: The dose of sedatives you receive can also change how long it takes for the effects to go away.
  • Person’s Metabolism: Everyone’s body works differently. This can affect how fast the sedative is broken down and removed from your body.
  • The Dental Procedure: The length and complexity of the dental work can also affect the time it takes for the sedative to wear off.

Final Word

If you always postpone your dental visits until your problem worsens, you can complicate things for yourself and your dentist. Therefore, sedation dentistry can help. Now that you understand, “How long does dental sedation last?” dental visits should no longer be a nightmare.

Visit Dr. Ahmad Millwala at Vintage Oral Surgery. Our oral and maxillofacial surgeon has advanced training in Anesthesiology. Dial (281) 800-8852 for an appointment.

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