Most oral surgery procedures require some form of anesthesia, whether it’s a local numbing agent or IV sedation. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons are trained in all forms of outpatient anesthesia. Dr. Robert Wood, Dr. Nicholas Coles, and Dr. Negin Saghafi at Arizona Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons have years of training and experience administering anesthesia for wisdom teeth procedures, facial surgeries, and more. The type of anesthesia necessary usually depends on the type and extent of your surgery, your overall health, and your preferences.
Overview of Anesthesia Types
To learn more about the different types of anesthesia available, review the descriptions below:
- Local anesthesia is used in virtually all oral surgery procedures, sometimes in conjunction with other forms of anesthesia. Local anesthesia is applied to numb the area of surgery and prevent any pain. If local anesthesia alone is used, patients will remain conscious throughout surgery, but feel no pain. You will be able to eat a light meal before your procedure and drive yourself home. Usually, the only sensation felt during the procedure is some pressure when the surgeon pushes on the area around the teeth. Simpler procedures, such as some extractions and soft tissue procedures, usually only require local anesthesia.
- Nitrous oxide (laughing gas) is used along with a local anesthetic to put the patient in a more relaxed state throughout the procedure. Nitrous oxide has a sedative and pain-controlling effect, but the patient will remain conscious. More complex extractions and other procedures may require nitrous oxide, which makes it easier for patients to undergo longer procedures.
- IV anesthesia is used for more lengthy and extensive procedures in the office, or in cases where the patient has more anxiety. IV anesthesia allows the patient to fall into a sleep-like state, having no awareness of the procedure taking place. You will need a designated driver to take you home after your procedure if you receive IV sedation. Patients will not be able to eat or drink for at least eight hours prior to undergoing IV anesthesia. Wisdom teeth extractions, dental implant procedures, and other more involved out-patient procedures are usually done with IV sedation and local anesthesia.
- Hospital-based general anesthesia is usually used for more extensive jaw and facial surgeries or for patients with significant medical issues who are not candidates for in-office IV anesthesia services. Reconstructive jaw surgeries, TMJ surgery, and other procedures may require general anesthesia. An anesthesiologist at the hospital will assist with these surgeries. Some patients can be driven home the same day as the procedure, but in other cases, an overnight stay may be necessary.
EXPAREL is a safe, non-addictive, opioid-free option to manage post-operative discomfort. A single dose administered during surgery provides up to 72 hours of effective pain relief. Learn more on our EXPAREL page.
Anesthesia Services at Arizona Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons
Your comfort and safety are our top priorities, and our surgeons have years of experience administering anesthesia for patients of all ages. To learn more about our practice and your anesthesia options, feel free to continue browsing this website or contact one of our offices for more information.