Can I Eat Before Dental Sedation?
By Frank Avason, DMD on October 05, 2019
Anxiety during major dental work is understandable. That’s why sedation dentistry is available. Both safe and effective, sedation dentistry helps reduce fear, stress, and movement during a dental visit, allowing Dr. Frank Avason III to perform necessary dental procedures.
Before patients undergo sedation dentistry, the team at our Denver, NC practice provides detailed do’s and don’ts. With this mind, let’s consider different sedation methods and whether or not patients can eat/drink before their dental visit.
The Type of Sedation Makes a Difference
There are different kinds of dental sedation, and the type of sedation that is used will make a major difference on whether or not you are able to have food or liquid prior to treatment.
These types of sedation are as follows:
- Nitrous Oxide Gas - During nitrous oxide sedation, patients inhale gas to help achieve a relaxed state.
- Oral Sedatives - WIth oral sedatives, patients will take a prescription sedative before coming to the practice. The sedative will take effect by the time they arrive. These oral sedatives come in pill or liquid form.
- IV Sedation - In this form of sedation, the sedative is administered intravenously. Since the sedative enters the patient’s bloodstream, the effects are felt in a matter of minutes.
- General Anesthetic - With general anesthetic, a patient is rendered completely unconscious, which is different from the various conscious-sedation methods above.
We will let you know which form of sedation will be used during the consultation process at our Denver center.
General Rule: Avoid Large Meals
Even if you can eat before undergoing dental sedation, it’s a good general rule to avoid large meals or drinking a large amount of fluid prior to your visit. Sedation drugs can cause nausea, so it’s best to eat light and keep your stomach a bit empty rather than trying to hold the contents of your stomach down.
Can I Eat If Before Nitrous Oxide Sedation?
Since nitrous oxide involves simple inhalation of gas, patients will usually not face major dietary restrictions prior to their dental visit aside from avoiding large meals.
Can I Eat Before Oral Sedation?
Dietary restrictions with oral conscious sedation vary from patient to patient. The type of sedative used will also determine if a patient can eat a light meal before a dental visit or if a patient should have no food for a few hours prior to their visit. Follow all instructions closely when taking any sort of medication.
Can I Eat Before IV Sedation?
With IV sedation, it’s typically best for patients to have an empty stomach for around six hours before their dental visit. Patients may be able to have clear liquids to remain hydrated, but they should not have any liquid two hours prior to their visit.
Can I Eat Before Deep Sedation/General Anesthesia?
With any kind of deep sedation or general anesthesia, it’s best to have an empty stomach. Avoid solid foods for six hours before your dental visit, and only ingest clear liquids up to two hours before you see your dentist or oral surgeon.
Providing Pre-Op Instructions for Patient Safety
In addition to dietary information and restrictions, patients will receive other detailed pre-visit and post-visit instructions regarding sedation dentistry. These will help ensure the success of treatment and that they experience no complications or adverse side effects.
Speak with a Skilled Dentist
For more information about sedation dentistry and why it may be the right option for you and your dental care needs, be sure to contact an experienced dentist about anxiety-free care. You can reach the team at Avason Family Dentistry in Denver by phone at (704) 820-9797.
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“Your smile is one of the first things someone notices about you—let us make it shine.” DR. FRANK AVASON III