Getting Over the Fear of General Anesthesia
Sometimes, One Patient's Pleasure is Another Patient's Fear!

Fear of General Anesthesia

Do you have a fear of being “put to sleep”? If so, you might be pleased to hear that you're not alone.

Many patients are frightened by the idea of being sedated – some even fear they'll never wake up! This unsettling idea will often cause patients to put off important dental treatments that require the use of general anesthesia. If you or someone you know has a fear of general anesthesia or is unsure about its safety, we've got some information for you that may be helpful.

Is general anesthesia really safe?

Despite what some people believe, general anesthesia is very safe and successful. General anesthesia has been used safely by anesthesiologists and dentists for years! The risk of death as a result of an anesthetic in a dental patient is extremely low (1:700,000). A trained anesthesiologist is always by the patient's side during their procedure to monitor their breathing and ensure their safety. The effects of general anesthesia will typically take several hours to wear off. It is recommended that a ride home is arranged before the visit.

While General Anesthesia is generally not used for most dental treatments and procedures, it may be recommended or required if:

  • The patient has an allergy to local anesthetic or is unable to experience its numbing effects.
  • The patient is unable to stay still during their dental treatment, or unable to keep their mouth open for an extended period of time.
  • The patient has a sensitive gag reflex.
  • The patient experiences severe dental anxiety or has a low tolerance for pain.
  • The patient's dental treatment is invasive or complicated.

A patient will only be approved to undergo general anesthesia for their dental procedure if their dentist knows that it will be safe to do so. He or she will be able to determine this with an assessment and review of the patient's medical history. Speaking with your dentist or anesthesia specialist about your concerns or fears regarding general anesthesia can be of a great help to you.

Conquering Your Fear

Asleep for Dentistry's Dr. Samuel Toong specializes in dental anesthesia and is very knowledgeable when it comes to helping patients feel as calm as possible during their visit. Our Asleep for Dentistry clinic in Burlington, Ontario is hospital grade with emergency equipment and medication. Our nurses have extensive experience in emergency medicine – including training in CPR, ACLS and PALS, and have spent years working within the ICU. Your safety and comfort is our top priority! We're here to ensure that your experience with general anesthesia (or any sedative medication) is a positive one.

If your fear of the dentist or sleep dentistry has been holding you back from crucial dental work, don't put your health at risk any longer! Call your sedation dentist in Burlington today to learn more, at (905) 631-1356.