What To Expect After Sedation Dentistry At Our Calgary Dentist Office

For some patients, just the thought of a visit to a Calgary dentist office can cause fear and anxiety. Although our Calgary dentist always strives to make our patients as comfortable and relaxed as possible, in circumstances where fear and anxiety may be preventing a patient from obtaining the dentistry they require or desire, sedation dentistry may be a valid option for them.

At our Calgary dentist office located in the heart of beautiful Kensington / Hillhurst / Sunnyside in NW Calgary, we are pleased to offer our patients both oral sedation dentistry as well as IV sedation dentistry (the IV sedation dentistry is administered by a duly qualified third-party general dentist). The goal of sedation dentistry, whether it be oral sedation dentistry or IV sedation dentistry, is to help you achieve a certain level of sedation (depending upon the type of sedation administered by our Calgary dentist) so you can proceed with your dental procedure in a safe and relaxed state.   In a previous blog post, our Calgary dentist reviewed how to prepare for a sedation dentistry appointment and, in this blog post, our Calgary dentist will outline what you can expect after your sedation dentistry appointment is completed. 



Prior to your sedation dentistry procedure, you will meet with our Calgary dentist to review your treatment plan, together with how to prepare for your sedation dentistry appointment and what to expect after your sedation dentistry appointment.  Our practice at our Calgary dentist office is to provide our patients with written sedation dentistry instructions outlining how to prepare for the sedation dentistry appointment, along with written instructions on what to expect after the sedation dentistry appointment has been completed.  Our Calgary dentist office follows the protocol outlined by the Alberta Dental Association & College for sedation dentistry.  You should always follow any instructions provided to you by your own Calgary dentist.



After our Calgary dentist completes your sedation dentistry appointment, prior to being discharged our Calgary dentist will ensure that you meet certain medical criteria to ensure that it is safe for you to go home.  Although when you are ready to go home you will be awake and oriented to time and place, you can expect that you will still be groggy and you will not be able to leave the office on your own.  Prior to your appointment, our Calgary dentist will ask that you confirm that you have made plans to have an adult escort, such as an adult family member or friend, to pick you up, take you home and stay with you until you are fully recovered.  In no circumstances will our Calgary dentist allow you to drive home, walk home, or take a bus or cab home by yourself as this could be detrimental to your safety.  Our Calgary dentist will only discharge you once your adult escort is ready to take you home.



A patient’s recovery after a sedation dentistry appointment will vary depending upon a variety of factors, including the type of sedation administered and the individual patient’s response to the particular type of sedation medication used.  If a deeper level of sedation is achieved, for instance with IV sedation or general anaesthesia (please note that our Calgary dentist does not administer general anaesthesia at his office), a patient can expect that the recovery time will be longer than with a minimal type of sedation, such as oral sedation.  With oral sedation, our Calgary dentist generally advises that the patient should expect that they will likely feel like sleeping or resting for the rest of the day and it may take 24 to 48 hours to fully recover.  With IV sedation, the recovery time may be longer.

During the recovery period for any type of sedation dentistry, our Calgary dentist recommends that you ensure that you keep well-hydrated and eat a light meal after any local anaesthesia has worn off so as to not accidentally bite your lip, tongue or cheek and to not upset your stomach.  Depending upon the type of dental procedure you had, our Calgary dentist may also recommend that you eat soft foods for the first few days, particularly if you had a tooth extraction or other type of dental surgery such as a dental implant placement.



After your sedation dentistry appointment, you will likely feel like you are intoxicated and it will take some time for you to recover.  At our Calgary dentist office we always advise that, for at least 24 yours after a sedation dentistry appointment, or until such time as you have fully recovered, whichever period of time is longer, you should take extra precautions at home and not partake in any activity that requires alertness, including the following:


  • operate a motor vehicle or any machinery or hazardous device

  • go to work

  • make any important decisions

  • look after children

  • cook or use an oven or a stove

  • consume any sedatives, alcohol or drugs (including recreational or over-the-counter drugs) except your prescription medication prescribed by your physician or by our Calgary dentist

  • take any stimulants, including caffeine, nicotine or narcotics





After your sedation dentistry appointment, with your prior obtained permission, our Calgary dentist will advise your escort as to how the dental procedure went. He will also provide you and your escort with his after hours contact cell phone number.  If you or your escort have any questions or non-emergency concerns at all during the recovery phase after your sedation dentistry appointment, our Calgary dentist always encourages you or your escort to call our office or the after hours number provided at any time.  If you are experiencing a medical emergency, you should always call 911 immediately.



Whether you require a follow-up appointment with your Calgary dentist will depend upon what type of dental procedure you had and whether you have any questions or concerns with the procedure or your recovery.  If a follow-up visit is recommended, then our Calgary dentist office will generally schedule a follow-up appointment within a couple of days after your sedation dentistry appointment, or sooner if necessary.


For most patients, sedation dentistry with our Calgary dentist can be a very effective way to help to reduce any anxiety and fear related to dental appointments.   Whether you are a candidate for sedation dentistry depends upon a variety of factors including your age, your overall health, your dental health, and your expectations regarding sedation dentistry.  If you would like to know more about sedation dentistry at our Calgary dentist office, please call us today for your consultation appointment.  Our Calgary dentist and dental team would be pleased to meet with you and answer any questions you may have.  Our Calgary dentist office is conveniently located in the beautiful community of Kensington / Hillhurst / Sunnyside and has early morning, evening and weekend appointments available.  Call us today at 403.283.4252!



This blog post written by our Calgary dentist, Dr. Dirk Thompson, D.D.S., is for informational purposes only.  It is not to be taken or used as a substitute for dental, medical or other professional advice, treatment or diagnosis.  Always ask your dentist, physician or other healthcare professional for advice before altering your diet or healthcare routine and always follow any instructions provided by them.  Individual patient needs and oral healthcare concerns vary so please consult your dentist for more information about your specific dental health requirements.


Copyright 2021: Dirk A. Thompson Professional Corporation operating as Advance Your Health Dental.  Dr. Dirk A. Thompson, D.D.S., is a general dentist in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.


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