How Long Does IV Sedation Last?

When you go to the dentist and have to have some sort of anesthetic to numb the pain of a procedure, how long the effects will continue to last are always a question. And when you have no experience with the process of IV sedation, it’s only natural to wonder how long it will be until you’re back to feeling yourself.

How Long Do Other Anesthetics Last?

That all depends on the kind of anesthetic that the dentist uses, as well as the quantity they use. Different kinds of surgery require different anesthetics.

For an easy example, and one that is common, most people have gone to the dentist and had to fill a cavity. The dentist will have to drill into your tooth to do this, so that means that you’re going to need some sort of local anesthetic. Commonly, they use Novocain to do this. Novocain dulls the sensation of pain (and most sensation, really) in the area near the site that they will operate on. It doesn’t alter your state of consciousness, and it doesn’t put people to sleep. At most, it makes the mouth feel puffy and asleep. Depending on how much the dentists uses, most people have their sense of feeling back within a few hours of the procedure finishing.

When it comes to other methods, the duration of the effects can be even shorter. Nitrous Oxide, commonly known as ‘laughing gas’, doesn’t last very long at all. In fact, it is one of the fastest gasses to escape the body, leaving within five to ten minutes after the flow ends. It goes quickly, and you will be back to normal quite swiftly after the flow of laughing gas ceases.

So How Long Does IV Sedation Last?

Again, this is a question that needs some specificity to give a precise answer. However, to speak in generalizations, within twenty-four hours of the procedure’s completion, you should no longer be feeling the impact of IV sedation.

This is all dependent on the amount of sedative that the dentist uses, the particular sedative, and the duration of the procedure. You are putting sedatives into your blood stream, after all. However, the high-end number for the duration of the effects is twenty-four hours, and the reality is that, depending on the work your dentist will do, it may be less than that, but it is not likely to be more.

However, during those twenty-four hours, you are going to need assistance. That’s why you must bring an escort with you to any procedure involving IV sedation, and it is important you comply with this.

IV sedation can make complex procedures much more bearable for both you and your dentist, though, and lessen pain immensely. If you have dental anxiety, it can also help you by keeping you unconscious or barely conscious of the procedure going on during your sedation.

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