To have dental sedation in an outpatient setting (a dental surgery, not a hospital), you need to be reasonably fit and healthy, able to communicate with, understand and cooperate with us, be able to recover in a reasonable time and get safely home, as we don't have a ward at the dentist to put you in to recover.
Some patients are safest being treated by specialists, and possibly in a hospital. These would include:
Children (a specialist paediatric dentist can best assess how to care for them and assess if General Anaesthesia (GA) is needed)
Special needs patients (eg. moderate to severe intellectual disability) are often best cared for by a special needs dentist who is set up to care for those patients can best assess their level of care, and if GA is needed.
The frail / elderly / those with complex medical conditions are best treated in hospital with specialist anaesthetist who are trained to manage sick patients and where adequate recovery facilities are in place. Often an overnight or extended recovery period is required and cannot be provided at the dentist.
If you are wheelchair bound, or otherwise not ambulant, moving you in and out of the dental chair and getting you safely home afterwards is difficult. If adequate lifting and carrying support is not available, treatment in a hospital is prudent.
Some extreme phobics will still need General Anaesthesia if they cannot bear the thought of any amount of consciousness at all during the procedure. Although they usually do well under sedation, they often cancel or back out at the last minute due to fear– wasting everyone’s time.
If General Anaesthesia or being completely knocked out is required, it needs to be done under the care of a specialist anaesthetist in a hospital or day surgery, not in a Dental Surgery.
If you are not sure if you, your loved one or your patient is suitable for outpatient sedation, please give us a call to discuss. We can also advise on suitable points of referral in your area.