Our team devotes a great deal of effort to relieving dental anxiety in Middlesex. If you feel anxious at the dentist, you’ll be tempted to skip routine appointments – which can lead to serious dental problems. When our patients tell us “that didn’t hurt a bit,” we consider it a great compliment!Doctor Ralph Reilly on relieving dental anxiety Read Transcript
We see a lot of people that are anxious about the dentist. Let's face it, most people, it's not their favorite thing. I mean, as long as it's not painful and pleasant, they don't mind it, but they'd rather go do something else instead, if they could. But we see a lot of people that their fear, typically they're what we call a PVE, a previous bad experience. We have, I guess you would call it, a menu of different options for people that, let's say, for people who have a mild anxiety or for a more minor procedure like, say, a cleaning, where we could give them something like a Valium the night before so they sleep very well, something like a Xanax an hour before they come in where they would be quite relaxed, and then nitrous oxide on top of that. That works real well for a lot of people. The advantages are, to that, is it's very inexpensive. They can drive here, and they can drive home. For stronger fear or anxiety, or a more involved or lengthy appointment, we offer what we call conscious sedation, which can be delivered either via pill orally or IV. I am certified in oral medication, and Dr. Dorfman's certified in the IV. With that, they would be very kind of groggy, relaxed, probably wouldn't remember being here. That level of sedation works for a lot of people. They do have to have somebody drive them here and drive them home, and we like them to take it easy the rest of the day when they go home. For people that would want sort of the max, we do have several board-certified hospital-based anesthesiologists that will come in the office with all their full-on OR equipment and put people completely out, general anesthesia.
We keep our office anxiety-free with:
- Many comfort amenities like warmed neck pillows and chenille blankets
- Paraffin treatments, scented candles, and lavender eye pillows for a spa-like experience
- Longer appointment times, if you need them
- A full range of dental sedation, including general anesthesia
- Topical numbing gel for painless injections
- TVs in every operatory for an entertaining diversion
We’re dedicated to your well-being and offering the best care possible, not just while you’re in the office but also when you leave. One of our doctors is even available for emergency calls after hours. To visit a practice committed to offering anxiety-free care, call 732-506-2876.
Select From Many Dental Sedation Options
Everyone reacts differently to dental procedures. To ensure you’ll remain relaxed, no matter how you feel about a procedure, we offer a full range of sedation. Unlike most dental practices, this includes general anesthesia administered by board-certified anesthesiologist Dr. Jay Patel.
We’ll discuss your anxiety level, the procedure you’ll be undergoing, and your medical history to determine the appropriate level of sedation for you. Options include:
- Light Sedation – Light sedation is for mild anxiety during simple visits like a dental cleaning or filling. Light sedation includes any combination of a sedative taken the night before, a sedative one hour prior to the appointment, and nitrous oxide (laughing gas) during the appointment. The advantage of this option is that there is minimal cost, usually no medical clearance necessary, patients can drive to and from their appointment, and there is no downtime.
- Conscious Sedation – For a higher level of anxiety or longer appointments, we offer conscious or “twilight” sedation. Dr. Reilly and Dr. Dorfman are certified by the state of NJ to deliver conscious sedation. This can be delivered via a pill or intravenously. It is extremely safe. The patient will be groggy but responsive. For example, if the doctor asks you to turn your head, you would be able to do so. Most patients don’t remember the visit and have no sense of the length of time. A medical clearance and pre-op vital sign check are required, and there is a charge for the service. We monitor the oxygen saturation, BP, pulse, and EKG when administering IV conscious sedation.
- General Anesthesia – For longer appointments, patients with a sensitive gag reflex, and patients with medical conditions, we have a certified and licensed anesthesiologist, Dr. Jay Patel, on staff. He is board-certified by the American Dental Board of Anesthesiology. He provides all levels of anesthesia and treats a broad spectrum of patients, including those with complex medical histories. Like in the hospital, there is a charge for the first hour and then for every 15 minutes thereafter. The patient pays Dr. Patel directly.