Local anesthesia is commonly used for basic procedures such as general tooth extractions or soft tissue procedures. During your surgery, a local anesthetic is administered to the area where the surgery will be performed. Unlike other forms of anesthesia, local anesthesia only affects the area around which the anesthetic is applied.
Nitrous oxide, more commonly known as laughing gas, is a gas that can be breathed in to assist in sedation and control anxiety during surgical procedures. It is odorless, colorless, and does not irritate, making it a common choice for patients who are nervous before surgery. Most patients find that they experience a euphoric feeling throughout their bodies after breathing in the gas. Nitrous oxide effectively assists with pain and anxiety control in conjunction with local anesthesia. It is also a convenient alternative to deeper sedation methods as it has a quick onset and recovery time with minimal residual effects once it has been turned off and flushed with oxygen.
For patients who desire a deeper level of sedation during their procedure, intravenous (IV) sedation and general anesthesia are also available. These options require intravenous access to administer anesthetic agents that put the patient to sleep. Most patients having their wisdom teeth removed or other invasive procedures will choose IV anesthesia. This also may be necessary if local anesthesia fails to numb the surgical site properly, which is commonly encountered with severe infections.
Dr. Poore and the staff at Monroe Oral Maxillofacial & Implant Surgery emphasize patient safety and comfort. To this end, Dr. Poore and his staff members are all certified in basic life support (BLS), and Dr. Poore also maintains his certification in advanced cardiac life support (ACLS) as well as pediatric advanced life support (PALS). The practice also participates in the office anesthesia evaluation as mandated by the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons and the Pennsylvania Society of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons.
We invite you to discuss your anesthesia options further with Dr. Poore and his staff at your pre-surgical consultation.