My girlfriend is having a procedure where she needs dental sedation. She said she’ll need a caregiver to get the procedure done. I agreed to be her caregiver, but I’m a little terrified. I have no idea what I’m supposed to do. What does being her caregiver entail?
It’s great that you’re trying to plan ahead to learn what you have to do to help your girlfriend. Believe me, it’s not nearly as scary as you think. Though, I do understand with it being an unknown why you’d be nervous.
The main thing with dental sedation is she will be very groggy and unstable on her feet—possibly even a little goofy. I’m sure you’ve seen videos on YouTube of people coming off of sedation saying silly things. There was even a video which went viral where some brothers pranked their sister into thinking there was a zombie apocalypse.
I don’t recommend you do anything like this. You’re there to make sure she doesn’t fall or anything like that. Plus, it wouldn’t hurt to pamper her a bit. Have a comfy spot ready for her on the couch and some DVDs or Netflix ready for her to binge on.
The dentist will give you any post-operative instructions. They won’t be hard but feel free to ask the dentist as many questions as you need.
Benefits of Dental Sedation
- It’s a lifesaver for people who have dental anxiety. Those who fear the dentist often have trouble getting numb. That’s because anxiety increases their metabolism which causes them to burn off the local anesthetic. Using dental sedation relaxes them enough to where the dentist can get them completely numb. Too often fearful patients avoid the dentist, which often means they end up with dental emergencies. Knowing they can have a pain free appointment enables them to get work done before they have serious problems.
- More work can be done in one appointment. When you’re completely awake and alert it can be challenging to keep your jaw open for an extended period of time, which means multiple appointments to break up the amount of time the patient needs to keep their jaw wide. With sedation, a patient generally sleeps through the procedure, so it’s much easier for the dentist to do more work. That means fewer dental appointments for the patient.
Relax. Keep her comfortable. Help her when she needs to move from place to place. That’s pretty much it.
This blog is brought to you by Dr. David Potts.