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  • Jason Arandia DMD

What Do I Need To Do Before My Sedation Dentistry Appointment?

You have made the brave first step of coming in for your sedation consultation and scheduled your sedation dentistry appointment to begin treatment. Now there are several important things to do that will make your appointment and recovery go smoothly.

Arrange An Escort: Make sure you have arranged for a trusted companion to bring you to our office and take you home. This person should also stay with you for a few hours after you get home to make sure you are recovering safely. When I say "trusted companion" I mean it. You don't want to find out your "friend" was Instagramming pictures of you while you were sleeping, or recording videos of you and posting them on Youtube. I know those videos are hilarious, but you don't want to be that person.

Pick Up Prescriptions: Dr Arandia will have prescriptions ready for you to pick up at your pharmacy. These may include some sedatives to take before your appointment, as well as antibiotics and pain medication for after your appointment.

Food: Make sure you stock your home with healthy foods to eat during your recovery. You will probably need to eat soft foods for a day or two, so things like fish, eggs, yogurt, mashed potatoes, bananas, pasta, soups and smoothies are your best bet. Avoid spicy or acidic foods, And pick up a gallon of ice cream, because you deserve it.

Eat Well The Night Before: You will not be able to eat or drink anything the day of your appointment, so make sure you have a decent meal, high in protein as well as healthy whole grains and vegetables that are easy to digest. You will need to supply your body with the energy and building blocks necessary to speed your healing and recovery. Do not eat anything that you know you will regret the next day. If you have indigestion or you are feeling nauseous we may have to cancel your appointment. That means don't eat the ghost pepper chicken wings and wash it down with a pitcher of beer. In fact, you shouldn't drink any alcohol at all.

Before Bedtime: Dr Arandia will give you a mild sedative to take to make sure you get a good night of sleep and arrive at your appointment well rested.

The Morning of Your Appointment Do Not Eat or Drink Anything: Why? The main concern here is aspiration. No, I don't mean your desire to be a Broadway Superstar. Aspiration is when foreign objects are inhaled into your lungs, usually liquid and food that is regurgitated from your stomach when you are sedated. No food in your stomach means less danger of aspiration. The only instance where a light meal before the appointment may be appropriate is if you are diabetic and take insulin or oral hypoglycemic medication. Other reasons not to eat: the food will slow the absorption of oral sedatives into your bloodstream, making it more difficult to get you sedated. Also, sugars and caffeine will counteract the sedative and keep you more alert. Alternatively, foods like grapefruit may make the sedatives more potent.

It is OK to take medication with a small sip of water, but do not take any medication that is not approved by Dr Arandia. It is critical to know what medications you have taken in order to account for potential drug interactions.

Wear Comfortable Loose Fitting Clothing with Short Sleeves: It makes it easier for us to attach the vital signs monitor and access you arms for placement of an IV. Comfortable clothes will also make you feel more relaxed. Don't worry if you get cold, we have blankets to keep you warm.

Leave Your Phone, Watch and iPod At Home: All the things that can distract you will make you difficult to sedate. We just want you to relax. You may think that listening to music with headphones will help you relax, but in fact the stimulation can have the opposite effect. It also makes it hard for us to communicate with you.

An additional note about your phone: Give it to your "trusted companion" with instructions not to let you make phone calls, post to Facebook, or Tweet. One of the side effects of the sedative is temporary amnesia. You may say or post things that you will not remember but the internet never will let you forget.

If you have questions about sedation dentistry or to schedule an appointment, please contact us at 617-232-7399

Dr. Jason Arandia treats dental patients in Boston, Brookline, Brighton, Waltham, Newton and Watertown. He received his general anesthesia training at Hartford Hospital and is licensed to practice moderate conscious sedation and nitrous oxide analgesia. Dr. Arandia is a member of the Dental Organization for Conscious Sedation (DOCS).

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