Frequently Asked Questions

What is conscious sedation? 
Conscious sedation utilizes medications which reduce anxiety and pain putting patients in a deeply relaxed state which typically causes sleep. Patients under conscious sedation can be awakened if needed and maintain their own breathing. Conscious sedation can be performed with both oral and IV administration routes.

What is the difference between oral and IV sedation? 
Oral sedation uses pills that are swallowed on an empty stomach, IV or (intravenous sedation) drugs are administered directly through the patient’s IV line and results in an immediate response and well controlled sedation. 

What forms of sedation does Dr. Oshetski offer? 
Dr. Oshetski is one of the very few offices in Maine that offer both oral and IV sedation for general and surgical procedures. Depending on your dental needs or sedation goals, Dr. Oshetski will make a recommendation so that he can provide you with the experience you are looking for.

What kinds of medications are used in conscious sedation? 
Anxiety reducing medications (benzodiazepines) are typically used when oral sedation is performed. With IV sedation, in addition to anxiety reducers, strong pain relievers, anti-inflammatories and other medications can be delivered resulting in an enhanced sedation and quicker recovery. 

What procedures are performed under conscious sedation? 
All aspects of dentistry (general dentistry, advanced prosthetics and implant or oral surgery) are routinely performed by Dr. Oshetski in sedated patients.

Who is a good candidate for sedation? 
Any patient who is fearful, has had a previous negative experience or difficulty getting numb, gag reflex, undergoing a surgical or lengthy procedure or just doesn’t want to remember their dental appointment are great candidates for sedation. 

Is conscious sedation safe in an in-office setting? 
Yes, since patients are screened for medical concerns and the medications administered are reversible, thousands of in-office procedures are performed daily in the U.S.  Dr. Oshetski is an expert in conscious sedation and has a state of the art facility where he incorporates the highest standard of monitoring equipment. 

Will I receive numbing (novocaine) if I am sedated? 
Yes, local anesthetic (novocaine) is still used for most of the procedures performed under sedation. 

Will I feel pain during the procedure? 
No. Since both local anesthetics are used and strong pain relievers as a part of the sedation, no pain is experienced.

Will I feel pain after the procedure? 
No. Since patients are typically numb when they wake-up and pain medications are given in the IV line, patients can expect to be very comfortable. 

Will I be relaxed during my procedure?
Yes, since all patients have different needs and expectations, oral and particularly IV sedation is able to make all patients relaxed able to complete the procedure. 

Will I remember the procedure?  
Patients typically remember little to nothing of their procedure. 

I have difficulty getting numb, how does sedation help? 
Sedation lowers the threshold or level of anesthetic necessary to achieve numbing in all patients. Patients who have difficulty getting completely numb are great candidates for sedation. 

I have a bad gag reflex, will sedation help? 
Yes, since sedation also lowers the gag response, patients who normally cannot have hands in their mouth are able to complete their dental work.

Will I need a driver? 
Yes. A driver and arrangements will be needed to ensure safe arrival and departure from the office. 

How much does it cost to be sedated at the dentist?
Cost depends on the length of the procedure and is typically a fraction of what a hospital would charge for an anesthesia procedure.