Patients undergoing full anesthesia during dental treatment, usually describe the experience with the following words: “Close your eyes, and wake up with new teeth.” Nowadays, if you suffer from anxiety or need multiple treatments, all dental treatments can be done under full anesthesia and can even be conducted on the same day!
Dental anxiety and additional constraints prevent many patients from coming to receive dental care regularly. As a result, the postponed treatments accumulate, and over time complications may develop.
After months and sometimes even years of pain you suddenly get to a point that you can no longer endure the pain, causing you to seek urgent medical intervention.
But even then, many patients settle for emergency treatment, once again avoiding the dental clinic at any cost causing them to accumulate even more dental problems.
Some people would describe this situation as absurd, what is the problem? Just go to a dentist?
But the reality is radically different, fear of a dentist is a condition known as a real problem called Dentophobia, and it leads to stressful states of anxiety, which can lead to seizures, temporary paralysis, and even fainting.
Our brain is a smart tool after all, it recognizes a situation in which we can potentially experience pain, and it will do everything it can to avoid it – that is only natural. In a normal situation, you might think there is no way to avoid the pain and all the anxiety, but nowadays, after a short examination, you can undergo full dental anesthesia and restore your mouth (Prosthodontics) all in one day!
1 How does dental treatment under full anesthesia work?
Initially, the dentist meets the patient and examines his medical condition. The procedure is performed based on the patient’s medical record and the dentist verifies that the patient can indeed undergo the treatment. The patient then undergoes an x-ray that examines what problems should be addressed during treatment.
When we know what problems we need to treat, it is much easier for us to avoid surprises during treatment hence a periapical radiograph is a must!
On the day of treatment, the patient is prepared for treatment by a registered nurse and an anesthetist who takes all the measurements. The dentist prepares the patient in every manner, whether it is to calm and guide the patient and of course keeps an eye that everything is ready for treatment and is functioning properly.
Once the patient is anesthetized, the dentist begins to treat the patient’s dental problems. The treatments that you can undergo under full anesthesia are not limited, and they can include sinus lifting surgery, dental implants, oral rehabilitation (Prosthodontics) and even aesthetic treatments.
Once the treatment is completed, the patient starts recovery and is advised not to eat or drink for several hours because the anesthetic can lead to vomiting and nausea. Moreover, the patient’s mouth has just undergone treatment which can be significant, therefore it is not recommended to challenge it with foods that are not easy to eat.
Of course, you do not have to worry about getting dehydrated or starving, throughout the whole treatment and during recovery, you will receive intravenous nutrition, and all your needs will be met through the IV attached to you.
After recovery, the patient is discharged to his home for continued treatment and follow-up, with a healthy mouth, and with an ear to ear smile.
# 2 What happens after treatment?
At the end of the treatment, you leave the clinic with your new teeth. Whether you have had surgery or had a dental implant, your mouth is now in a sensitive state and you must remember how to conduct your nutritional routine in order to help heal the soft tissue in your mouth and help your new teeth to acclimate properly.
At the beginning, it is recommended to avoid tough food, especially when you have had a tooth transplant. The food that can be eaten after dental implant includes: mashed potatoes, soft rice, soups, meat balls or well-cooked minced meat dishes, soft cheeses, soft legumes after intense cooking, and fruit puree.
# 3 How many hours after undergoing full anesthesia during dental treatment should you wait before eating solid food?
If you have undergone simple treatments such as root canals, or deep fillings, you will need to avoid food for about two hours after treatment.
If dental implants of any kind have been performed, consult your physician. In dental transplants, it is sometimes weeks before solid food can be chewed.
If it comes to aesthetic treatment, it varies from one hour to a few days, depending on the type of treatment. You should consult with your dentist. If you are worried not knowing what to do, don’t. Before your release, the dentist will guide you exactly how to conduct after treatment.
# 4 When can the teeth be brushed again?
In general, the immediate answer to this question is the same day or the next morning, depending on how you feel. But there are cases where you will need to consult with the dentist. Each case, is in fact, a case of its own.
If you cannot brush your teeth, there are other, more gentle ways for you to maintain your oral hygiene after having full anesthesia, until your condition improves. Some of the ways to maintain your oral hygiene are:
- Rinse with salt water after eating.
- Rinse with mouthwash to refresh your mouth at the beginning and end of each day.
- Clean food residue using dental toothpicks that allow you to gently remove any residue, without damaging your teeth (note, not a wooden toothpick).
- You can always brush your tongue to avoid bad breath and bacterial accumulation in your mouth.
Another tip for reducing the level of acidity in your mouth during recovery is avoiding carbohydrates and sugars, or at least limiting their consumption to once or twice a day. The plaque will accumulate less (as carbohydrates and sugars are its main source of nourishment) and you will enjoy a fresh mouth over a longer period of time.
# 5 Should painkillers be used after treatment?
Depending on the treatment you undergo and the condition of your gums and teeth in your mouth you may need to take painkillers for a day or two. It is advised to consult with your dentist what painkillers to take, he can also give you prescriptions for prescription painkillers, if needed.
In case there is any pain that continues to bother you after treatment, you should update your dentist and go to the clinic if necessary. The more you keep track of what is going on in your mouth after treatment, and the better care of oral hygiene you keep, the less you will need to go back to the clinic for unnecessary visits.
Dental treatment under full anesthesia makes sure you can:
- Get all the treatments you need at one time!
- Smile with an open mouth, showing all your teeth after undergoing teeth implants.
- Not experiencing pain every time you chew or drink something (after fully healing).
- Speak confidently and let loose not having to think about what your teeth look like. You are freer to enjoy any interaction.
And one last thing, but very important! Stop using painkillers every time you suffer pain due to gingivitis, cavities and broken teeth. There is a massive difference between a healthy mouth and a mouth of a patient suffering from pain 24 hours 7 days a week. You will feel that difference!
With full anesthesia, every treatment is possible and there is no need to worry about pain.
Many patients come to me with fears and worries, and I consider it my mission to treat them until recovery, because it can be done differently. Full dental anesthesia is one of the most common ways in dealing with these types of conditions.
When a patient leaves my clinic smiling after postponing dental treatment for a long time, I am filled with happiness. ❤
Calming fears and achieving dental health that comes with a large smile filled with healthy teeth, is no less important than fulfilling my role as a dentist. I would love to talk to you and see how we can progress together towards a healthy mouth and robust health.