Sleep dentistry (sedation dentistry) at our Melbourne clinic
When you want to feel calm and relaxed during your dental appointment, come to our Melbourne clinic to have your procedure performed under sleep dentistry.
Our dentists and our external consultant anaesthetist allow you to have the dental care you need while reducing or eliminating unease or stress. Our staff know how to help patients who may typically be too afraid to come to the dentist, so that they can receive the quality dental treatments they need in a calming and stress-free environment.
If you’re a patient who worries about going to the dentist, you have the choice about having intravenous (IV) sedation or general anaesthetic to allow you to have your procedure performed. After it’s over, you’re moved to our recovery area where we monitor you until you’re ready to be taken home by your trusted friend or family member.
Sleep dentistry vs sedation dentistry
You may have heard of sedation dentistry – it’s another way to describe sleep dentistry. Sleep dentistry at our Melbourne clinic is your top choice if you are a patient who thinks about dental appointments and instantly becomes stressed or worried. The main purpose of sleep dentistry is to provide dental care in a calm and tension-free environment.
When you have your sleep dentistry treatment at our clinic, you can be sure that your treatment is safe, comfortable and convenient. You don’t need to go to a hospital for your treatment, and as our anaesthetist is a qualified medical practitioner, Medicare will rebate part of the cost of your sedation or anaesthetic treatment.
Different kinds of sleep dentistry
Patients from Oakleigh and surrounds receive our top-quality sleep dentistry options – all from the safety, security and ease of our conveniently-located clinic. When you choose one of our sleep dentistry solutions, there’s no need to go to hospital – you will receive your selected dental treatment in the comfort and familiarity of the dental chair.
IV sedation dentistry
We have a consultant anaesthetist who comes to our Melbourne clinic to administer sedation for sleep dentistry treatments. The anaesthetist administers a combination of sedative medication and pain-relief medication direct to your system intravenously (IV). Within a few minutes, you will feel as if you’re in a dream-like state. You may feel sleepy, but you should feel relaxed. Some patients who have sleep dentistry performed under IV sedation may not even remember the procedure.
Once you’re adequately sedated, our skilled and experienced dentist will perform the required dental treatment. The consultant anaesthetist will monitor your vital signs (blood pressure, oxygen level, pulse and breathing) throughout the dental procedure.
The anaesthetist will safely remove all IV tubes and monitoring equipment once our dentist has finished the dental procedure.
Dentistry performed under general anaesthetic (GA)
Our external consultant anaesthetist applies a general anaesthetic (GA) to you intravenously – you will be ‘knocked out’ while under a GA. Throughout the procedure, you will be connected to a monitor where our consultant anaesthetist will track your vital signs – breathing, blood pressure, pulse and oxygen level. Our dentist will be able to safely perform the required dental procedure while you are in complete care of the consultant anaesthetist.
At the end of the dental procedure, the anaesthetist will safely remove all IV tubes and begin the process of returning you to consciousness.
Recovery from sleep dentistry
After your sleep dentistry procedure, you will be moved to a recovery room in our dental clinic, where you will be monitored as you begin to ‘wake up’. When you’re ready to leave, we’ll inform your trusted friend or family member so that you can be taken home safely. Your friend or family member will be given instructions for your home care, which will include not driving for the rest of the day.
Sleep dentistry – the benefits
When you receive treatments performed under sleep dentistry, some or all of the following benefits should occur:
• Alleviating worry and anxiety, leaving you calm and centred after your appointment
• Completing all dental work in a reduced number of visits
• Lessening a gag reflex, which can make it hard for some patients to visit the dentist
• Preventing you from remembering smells, sights and sounds which are sometimes connected with dental anxiety
• Providing ease and comfort for patients who may live with certain medical conditions which can make it hard to stay still during a visit to the dentist.
What are the costs of sleep dentistry?
The cost for your sleep dentistry treatment performed under IV sedation or general anaesthetic changes from patient to patient. Our friendly office staff members, in conjunction with your dentist, will provide you with all information related to fees.
Having this information means that before you book your procedure, you will have a good understanding of what you need to pay. You will pay the anaesthetic fees separately because you’re eligible to receive a rebate from Medicare for part of this cost.
FAQs About Sleep Dentistry
When you are a patient receiving sleep dentistry treatment, our qualified dental and medical staff will continuously monitor you to make sure you are completely safe.
Note: There are risks associated with any surgical or invasive procedure. We suggest you seek a second opinion from an appropriately-qualified health practitioner of your choosing.
We ask you to not eat or drink anything for four hours prior to your appointment. We also know that you may be feeling worried or stressed before your first sleep dentistry appointment. We have noticed that patients returning to our Oakleigh clinic for second and subsequent sleep dentistry visits come in calm, smiling and stress-free!
When your sleep dentistry treatment is over, you will need to remain at our Oakleigh clinic for 45 minutes. Staying for this length of time means we can properly monitor you for any after-effects, which can include drowsiness, nausea or any bruising or swelling at the injection site.
When we clear you to leave our clinic, you will need to be accompanied by a trusted friend or family member, as the effects of IV sedation and general anaesthetic take a few hours to wear off. Also, you will not be permitted to drive for the rest of the day.
Before your planned treatment, our dentists will book you in for a detailed assessment to determine if you are suitable to receive sleep dentistry dental treatment.
Some patients are excluded from intravenous sedation and anaesthetic. These exclusions include:
• Addictions to drug and alcohol
• Being over a certain weight
• Being on certain prescription medications.
After the assessment, if our dentist assesses you as not being an ideal candidate for sleep dentistry, he or she will suggest alternative options and therapies to ensure that you receive appropriate dental treatment solutions. It is our number-one priority to make you feel safe and comfortable.
Sedation treatment can be applied for major or minor dental procedures. Remember, one of the key goals of sleep dentistry is to minimise any stress or worry patients may have about visiting the dentist. Sleep dentistry makes it easier to confidently manage dental visits.
The time it takes to have a sleep dentistry treatment depends on what kind of dental procedure you need. Generally speaking, your treatment time will take between 30 and 120 minutes. And you can’t forget the recovery time you need to consider after your treatment.
Yes! In Australia, qualified dentists need to undertake extra training to achieve the Dental Board of Australia accreditation in deep sleep sedation and general anaesthesia. Our external consultant anaesthetist is a qualified medical practitioner, and comes to our Oakleigh clinic on selected days to administer the IV sedation or general anaesthetic while your regular dentist performs the dental procedure while you are under sedation.