Dental anesthesiology is a subspecialty of dentistry that provides anesthesia and sedation services during dental procedures. Anesthesia is a substance used in medical and dental settings to prevent patient movement and sensation. Dental anesthesiologists are dentists with an additional residency in the safe use of anesthesia. Dental anesthesiologists practice in dental offices, hospitals, and surgery centers. Procedures that a dental anesthesiologist might help with include:
Before initiating treatment, dental anesthesiologists consider their patients' age, allergies, and pain response. Younger patients or those with pain sensitivity, anxiety, or special needs may be given general anesthesia or sedation for even routine dental visits. General anesthesia temporarily induces unconsciousness and is administered through an intravenous drip (IV) or inhalant face mask. Other patients will undergo general anesthesia only during complex dental procedures and during routine procedures, have local or topical anesthesia, treatments used to numb a portion of the mouth. Dental anesthesiologists monitor a patient's respiration, heart rate, and blood pressure and may modify the levels of anesthesia delivered if necessary. Dental anesthesiologists can administer the following types of anesthesia or sedation:
Dental anesthesiologists may work alongside dentists, orthodontists, maxillofacial and oral surgeons, among other dental professionals.