Sitting in the dentist’s chair can be both scary and painful for geriatric patients and their loved ones, especially when the patients have Alzheimer’s or dementia impeding their ability to comprehend or remember what is happening to them. For geriatric patients with fibromyalgia or arthritis it can be difficult to sit still in the chair for long periods of time. At Central Kansas Dentistry, we offer oral sedation dentistry to make the dental experience less difficult for all parties involved.
Prior to the appointment day, Dr. Williams will prescribe an oral sedative like Halcyon that can be picked up at any pharmacy. Caretakers should give the sedative to the patient approximately 1 hour before the patient is due in the dentist’s chair to give the medicine time to take effect. The patient will simply fall asleep, or at least a dreamlike state very close to sleep.
The dentist will perform any needed dental work on your loved one and return him or her to your care once any procedures are complete. The oral sedation lasts 4-6 hours, so the patient may sleep for some time after the work is complete. Caretakers should escort the patient home and help him or her into bed or another place where they can safely rest without risk of falling and injuring themselves.
If needed, the dentist will provide aftercare instructions, and you should review them with the patient once they are awake and fully alert. If the reason for sedation is due to dementia or Alzheimer’s, caretakers should be prepared to help the patients follow through with the instructions as best they can.
To schedule a sedation dentistry appointment for your parent or loved one, call our office at (888) 862-4077.