Stay Safe & Relax In The Dentist’s Chair

Dental Sedation in Colorado Springs, CO

The Benefits Of Sedation Dentistry

At Tuttle Family Dentistry, we know that a dental appointment is not everyone’s idea of a good time. And that’s why we offer both laughing gas sedation and oral conscious sedation for all patients.

Sedation dentistry has a lot of great benefits. First, it helps you overcome feelings of anxiety and fear that may otherwise stop you from getting the treatment you need. Even if you have dental anxiety, you can get expert care from Dr. Tuttle.

With sedation, you'll also feel more comfortable in the dentist’s chair, which is very important for long appointments that may take 2+ hours. You can relax throughout your entire procedure, and get through it more easily.

Sedation dentistry can also help improve your pain tolerance, mitigate fear of needles such as numbing needles, and even impair your gag reflex. Interested in these benefits? Contact Tuttle Family Dentistry now to schedule your appointment. We proudly serve the Colorado Springs area! 

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Is Dental Sedation Safe?

Yes. Every type of dental sedation is safe, and serious complications of any type are extremely rare. And Tuttle Family Dentistry, we take your safety very seriously. Before you’re approved for sedation, you’ll discuss your health history, medications you’re taking, and other details with Dr. Tuttle. This ensures you can be sedated safely.

And throughout the sedation process, your vital signs will be closely monitored by our team to ensure your safety throughout your entire procedure. When you work with the team at Tuttle Family Dentistry, you’ll be in good hands.

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dentist working on patient

What Does Dental Sedation Feel Like?

This depends on the type of sedation you get. Let’s start with nitrous oxide sedation. Most patients feel very euphoric when they get nitrous oxide sedation. You will feel happy, comfortable, and a bit disconnected from the things that are happening around you. You might even find the situation funny, which is why nitrous oxide is also called “laughing gas.”

However, you will remain fully conscious during nitrous oxide sedation. You won’t feel any feelings of pain or anxiety, but you will still be aware of your surroundings. This makes it a particularly good option if you don’t like the idea of sleeping through your appointment.

Oral conscious sedation is quite a bit different. Similarly to nitrous oxide, you will begin to feel calmer and less anxious as the drugs take effect. But unlike laughing gas, you also will feel really tired and groggy. In fact, it’s quite common for patients to fall asleep during their procedures.

You won’t be unconscious, though, just sleeping. You can be woken up and you can still respond to commands, if needed. Another common effect of oral conscious sedation is “anterograde amnesia.” This means you may forget most or all of what happened during your procedure.

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Oral Conscious Sedation After-Effects

Oral conscious sedation has much longer after-effects than nitrous oxide sedation. Your reflexes and decision-making abilities will be impaired for up to 4-6 hours or longer, so you cannot drive yourself home. You will need to bring someone with you to our office who can drive you home and make sure you get home safely.

As you recover and the sedation wears off, you may feel nauseated, confused, dizzy, or have dry mouth. You may also feel drowsy and fatigued. Once you get home, take it easy for the rest of the day and relax. As time goes on, these effects will fade.

IV Sedation

IV Sedation is a deeper form of sedation compared to oral conscious sedation. It is administered through an IV that is hooked up to a patient’s vein. This enables the onset of effects to kick in pretty fast, within about 20 minutes. However, unlike general anesthesia, patients do not need breathing assistance. 

IV sedation puts you into a semi-conscious state, often referred to as twilight sleep. Depending on the dosage, you may be awake or fall asleep. However, you will be aware of your surroundings. We will be able to wake you easily by giving you a light shake, so you can readily respond to instructions. 

You won’t remember the procedure afterward and will feel very relaxed and sleepy while sedated. IV sedation is very effective at relieving dental anxiety, as it puts patients at ease and provides a sense of deep relaxation. It is also highly effective at alleviating pain. 

How Does IV Sedation Work?

IV sedation utilizes the same type of medication as oral conscious sedation, but delivered directly into your bloodstream through an IV. This type of sedation takes effect almost instantaneously, and results in a deeper state of sedation. In fact, many patients actually fall asleep during their treatment, but are woken easily and are able to respond to questions or commands. 

After your procedure, you may feel some lingering effects of the sedative for 4-6 hours, or even a little longer. You also may be unable to remember your treatment, which can be helpful for those who experience anxiety when they go to the dentist. You will not be able to drive yourself home after you receive IV sedation, so you’ll need to arrange for a ride to and from our office on the day of your appointment. 


Solea is a minimally-invasive dental laser that eliminates the need for sedation, dental drills, and needles. The Solea laser eliminates pain and discomfort without the need for sedation or local anesthesia. 

It's a painless CO2 laser that cuts into soft tissue and tooth enamel without any bleeding, reduces inflammation, promotes faster healing, and eliminates the need for sutures. Dental work has never been so comfortable and less nerve-wracking! 

This enables us to perform frenectomies, enameloplasty, lengthening crowns, eliminating snoring in patients with sleep apnea, reshaping soft tissue for restorations, treating gum disease, removing tooth decay, whitening the teeth, taking a biopsy, and much more.

Sedation for Wisdom Teeth Removal

We offer sedation for all tooth extractions. Alleviating pain and making you feel at ease during a wisdom tooth extraction is especially important because it requires surgical removal. There are various sedation options to choose from when having your wisdom teeth extracted, ranging from mild and moderate to heavy sedation. 

General anesthesia may also be used but is typically not necessary except in rare or complicated cases. In all likelihood, you will choose from nitrous oxide, oral conscious sedation, or IV sedation. Which option is most suitable for you will depend on how complicated the removal of your wisdom teeth will be, your medical history, and your preference. 

If you would prefer to be more heavily sedated or unconscious, IV sedation or general anesthesia is the best option for you. However, more mild sedatives have the lowest associated risks and many patients prefer to be conscious during the procedure. Come in for a consultation so we can discuss your options.