Twilight Dentistry is a technique that involves the intravenous administration of a sedative before dental work is performed. Also known as IV sedation, it is a technique of choice to treat anxious patients, or people who are nervous, fearful, or unable to tolerate the pain that is associated with some dental procedures. When performed by a skilled dentist, it creates a pain-free dental experience that the patient is typically unable to remember when the procedure is finished.
IV sedation is an excellent option for patients who are anxious or afraid to visit the dentist. In general, there are three situations in which IV sedation is recommended:
- Patients who require procedures that are lengthy or complex
- Patients who tend to experience high levels of stress or fear about dental procedures
- Patients who have a low threshold for pain and with those who have a pronounced gag reflex
As with the case of any procedure, you should talk to your dentist about your specific situation and whether you are a good candidate for IV sedation.
The use of IV Sedation
While many dentists can administer nitrous oxide or minimal sedation, only a small number of dentists are trained to administer deep IV sedation. The Dental Board of Australia states that, "Only dentists, including dental specialists, whose registration is endorsed for conscious sedation can use this technique in their practice". Some of the medical and dental professionals who can perform IV sedation:
- Board endorsed conscious sedation dentists
- Dental anaesthesiologists
- General anaesthesiologists
The most important thing to remember when choosing a dentist to perform IV sedation is to ensure that the dentist has the proper qualifications to perform sedation dentistry.