Sedation in Calgary

Sedation and sleep dentistry keep you relaxed and stress-free during your dental treatment.

Experience dentistry free from stress and anxiety

Anesthetic and sedation options are available to prevent you from feeling pain and discomfort during your dental procedure. There are several methods available and several may be combined to give you complete coverage. The type of sedation or anesthesia used will depend on your personalized treatment plan, your personal needs and the expert opinion of your dentist or specialist.


What is sleep dentistry/conscious sedation?

Sleep dentistry should more accurately be called sedation dentistry. The goal of sedation dentistry is to alleviate the fear and apprehension surrounding a dental visit using drugs as a means of controlling anxiety. Patients will be taken to a state of minimally decreased consciousness and may or may not “fall asleep”. Certainly sedated patient will be more relaxed, more willing to tolerate treatment and depending on the level of sedation (even if they do not fall asleep) likely will not remember the procedure at all. Because patients who undergo sedation are conscious, they are able to breath on their own and respond to verbal commands.

Conscious sedation is NOT general anaesthesia! Our patient is not unconscious, does not have a tube down his/her throat and does not have a respirator inflating his/her lungs.

Types of conscious sedation:

There are several ways in which sedative drugs can be administered. Common ways include:

(1)          Inhalational: Nitrous oxide (laughing gas).

(2)          Oral: Pills taken by mouth typically 1-2 hours prior to a dental visit for mild-moderate relaxation during a dental procedure.

(3)          Parenteral: Intravenous (IV) administration of medicines to achieve a more profound and predictable level of relaxation and amnesia.

Why IV sedation rather than a “sleeping pill”?

When sedative medications are given intravenously (directly into the blood supply) it is much easier to achieve a rapid and predictable level of sedation. If the initial dose of sedative drug is insufficient to achieve a relaxed and comfortable state, more medication can be given with almost instant results. During an IV sedation we titrate the dose of drugs to the patients needs. This means that we can give as much or as little medication as is required at the time that it is required to achieve a desired level of relaxation. When a drug is given orally there is some guess-work involved in determining what the correct dose of the drug should be to obtain the ideal desired result. If not enough drug is given you may need to wait for 30 – 45 minutes until more medicine can be ingested and absorbed by your body. The drugs we use are very safe and their effects are very predictable and totally reversible. This is the safest form of drug administration. It is also the most predictable and effective form of conscious sedation.

The benefits of dental sedation

Sedation and sleep dentistry are useful options that help us serve patients from all walks of life with many different challenges to overcome. Some of the benefits of sedation dentistry are as follows:

Gentle Freezing

Overcoming Dental Anxiety

Sometimes the fear and worry can feel worse than the treatment itself. Dental anxiety shouldn’t stand between you and the dental treatment you need. If you have mild or extreme dental anxiety or fear is keeping you from seeking dental treatment, please speak up! We can help.

Examining and preparing the tooth

Make Time Fly By

For long procedures that leave you sitting in the chair with your mouth wide open for a long time, sedation will keep you relaxed and comfortable. Your procedure will be over before you know it. If you require IV sedation, it will feel like an instant has passed.

Great for small repairs

Tailored for Your Personal Needs

Do you have a sensitive gag reflex? Chronic restlessness or restless leg syndrome? Does local freezing just not work for you? Sedation is really helpful in many different cases, ensuring that treatment is available to everyone.

Contact us today

to schedule an initial consultation & exam.

Your consultation will include an examination of everything from your teeth, gums and soft tissues to the shape and condition of your bite. Generally, we want to see how your whole mouth looks and functions. Before we plan your treatment we want to know everything about the health and aesthetic of your smile, and most importantly, what you want to achieve so we can help you get there.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is dental sedation safe?

Rest assured that we talk to each and every one of our patients to understand their medical history to decide if sedation dentistry is the right option for you.

What does sedation feel like?

Sedation will make you feel drowsy and relaxed pretty quickly. Some people report feeling a mild tingly sensation. You may also experience mild amnesia afterwards and may not remember anything from the procedure.

What if I am nervous about being put to sleep?

Most sedation dentistry options don’t actually involve patients being put to sleep. Rather sedation dentistry allows patients to feel extremely relaxed. You may not even remember any of the procedure once it’s over.

Will I need someone to drive me home?

When sedation is involved we always stress the importance of having a friend or family member drive you home and keep you company. It’s important to let the sedation wear off completely and give your body a rest before returning to your regular routine.

How long does it take for sedation to wear off?

If you’ve been sedated for your dental procedure we would advise you to take the day off to recover. A good rule of thumb is to set aside 24-hours before returning to your regular routine. The time it takes for any drowsiness to pass will depend on what kind of sedation you receive but may be somewhere between 2 to 8 hours.

Will I be asleep during the procedure?

Patients may or may not fall asleep once sedated however due to the amnesia caused by the sedative drugs, most people don’t remember the any of the dental procedure. It is important to remember that our patients are all conscious throughout their sedation experience (meaning able to respond to verbal commands and breath safely and effectively on their own). This is NOT a general aneasthetic!

Can I drive home after my sedation is over?

Following any type of sedation (oral/intravenous) you should NOT operate a vehicle until the following day. Please refer to pre-and post-operative sedation handouts for more complete instructions.

Do I need someone to look after me once the dental procedure is done?

Because the medications that are administered can cause profound amnesia it is important to have someone you trust take you to and from your appointment, and have someone able to look after you for the remainder of the day until the effects of the drugs have worn off completely.

Patient Testimonials

Southport Dental Care is excellent, and I highly recommend them because they have great staff, very professional. Always had a pleasant experience.

Rina D’Souza

The strength of Southport Dental is the staff. They are highly competent professionals who genuinely care about their clients. It is a treat to interact with positive people who are there to take care of the dental needs of their clients. They are fun people who take the edge off what can be a stressful situation.

Roy Wilcox

I had a Broken tooth and this was the first time I was searching a Dentist. Through friends I became the number of Southport Dental. From the beginning on they were very friendly and when I had the appointment.
I only can recommend this dental office because they are very friendly professionals in all. I was feeling under “family” and I saw many clients cheerful and happy.

Freddy Valdivia