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Sleep Dentistry

Terrified of or anxious about having dental treatment? If you or someone you know suffer from one of the following, then sleep dentistry might be the solution!

Do any of the following sound familiar:

  • Petrified of dental treatment due to past experiences
  • Severe gag reflex
  • Medical conditions inhibiting routine dental treatment
  • Intellectually or physically disabled
  • Live in a remote region or only visiting Adelaide for a short time
  • Need extensive dental treatment and wish to complete treatment efficiently with fewer sessions
  • Require surgical or complex procedures that can be more comfortably and efficiently carried out under IV sedation.

We are aware of the anxiety many people suffer before and during treatment, therefore we ensure our treatments are conducted in the most comfortable environment possible. We offer intravenous (IV) Sedation in our rooms, with a Specialist Anaesthetist and a Registered Nurse in attendance. Alternatively, we can provide treatment under General Anaesthetic (GA) within a Private Hospital setting. Patients should feel assured to know that we have over 25 years of experience in this field of operative dentistry. We strive for  pain-free dentistry in a very relaxed atmosphere.

Intravenous (IV) Sedation

This technique uses medications for your safety and comfort during dental treatment. Sedation can help increase cooperation and reduce anxiety and/or discomfort associated with dental procedures. In particular, it can prevent injury by helping the patient stay still around the sharp or fast-moving instruments needed for treatment.

For this technique, the anaesthetist selects a medication and dose based upon the patients overall health, level of anxiety and dental treatment recommendations. It is not intended to cause a loss of consciousness. (In other words, the patient is relaxed but not asleep. They are able to respond to touch or voices.)

This approach may be recommended for more complex procedures, apprehensive patients, very young children and children with special health care needs who would not be able to receive necessary dental care in a safe and comfortable manner without it.

Sedation is safe when administered by an anaesthetist in line relevant professional guidelines. Parents should feel free to discuss with their dentist the different medications and sedation options, as well as the special monitoring equipment used for patient protection.

Things to consider if you are undergoing treatment under IV sedation

  • A complete dental examination usually with x-rays and other tests is required before  arranging any dental treatment procedures. You will be  fully informed and your consent to the recommended treatment is required.
  • Your medical health will need to be assessed preoperatively - if complex medical conditions exist, you may be required to meet with the Specialist Anaesthetist at a separate appointment prior to you IV sedation date
  • Complete fasting for at least 4 hours prior to the IV is required (including any fluids)
  • You must be accompanied by a responsible adult to and from the appointment and you must also have a responsible adult with you immediately after the IV session and for the next 8 hours
  • Operating any vehicle or machine for 12 hours is not permitted
  • No alcohol for 12 hours before and after treatment.
  • No activity requiring cognitive thought should be performed for 8 hours
  • You will need to arrive 15 minutes prior to your appointment to complete paperwork

General Anaesthesia (GA)

Medically speaking, general anaesthesia is an induced state of unconsciousness. In practical terms, the patient is asleep and unable to respond to touch or voices. It is most often recommended for complex procedures where it is more difficult for patients to tolerate the treatment required to restore their oral health. For example, if a toddler was suffering from severe early childhood caries and required multiple root canals and crowns, the parents might agree that general anaesthesia was the most comfortable and safest way to complete treatment. Or, it may be the treatment of choice for a child with a mental or physical disability for whom a hospital setting provides the safest and best approach to care.

All patients should know that children face the same risk under general anaesthesia for dental treatment as for any other surgical procedure. The treatment should be provided only by highly qualified health professionals, including dentists with advanced education in anaesthesiology, dental or medical anaesthesiologists, oral surgeons, and certified registered nurse anaesthetists. When this treatment method is used at the hospital, it will feature special monitoring and emergency equipment and trained support personnel. Patients are encouraged to talk openly with their dentist about the benefits and risks of this treatment.

Please Note for the above treatment methods

  • You MUST contact us at least 3 weeks before your appointment to make any changes or you will be liable for a significant cancellation fee. You can contact reception at 8267 1894
  • The dentist will endeavour to provide  you with a cost estimate before  your treatment date. We must stress that this serves as an estimate only; the nature of many dental procedures is unpredictable and in some cases more extensive treatment may be required. Our policy is to always provide treatment that is the best interest of the patient and where possible, we try to let you know of the potential for any extra treatments that may have to be carried out.  
  • If Diabetic, please bring your glucose monitor with you
  • If Asthmatic, please bring your inhaler with you
  • Anaesthetic fees must be paid in advance. We will provide you with payment details. Dental fees are usually required on the day of treatment

NADC & Dental Sleep Medicine

Our own Dr. Greg Miller in October 2016 was the MC and Chair of Day 2 of the 10th annual Australasian Sleep Association's Oral Sleep Medicine course ‘Sleep – The dental connection’, which was held as part of the main meeting of the Sleep Down Under 2016 at the Adelaide Convention Centre. Dr Miller has completed the Graduate Diploma in Dental Sleep Medicine (GDDSM) from Adelaide University in 2014 with Distinction.

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