Sedation Dentistry

Sedation Dentistry 

If you’re anxious about going to the dentist—or haven’t been to the dentist for years—then you’re not alone. Many people put off having the dental care they need because of fear and anxiety. The good news is that we can help you have a more relaxing experience. Qualified to give oral sedation for all procedures, extensive or minor, Dr. Mark Cantu has helped literally thousands of patients nervous about dental treatment.

In addition to oral sedation, we also offer nitrous oxide (laughing gas) as well for lighter sedation. Together we will form a plan to correct any problems you have, and you will be comfortable throughout the work, often with no memory of it being accomplished.

Laughing Gas

Laughing gas is a type of minimal inhaled sedation. It’s ideal for kids and people who may have minor-to-moderate dental anxiety. The treatment consists of a nose mask, which is worn over your face during your treatment. 

Dr. Cantu will administer a blend of oxygen and nitrous oxide, which is carefully controlled to ensure the best results. You’ll simply breathe through your nose when he tells you to do so, and the gas will immediately enter your lungs and take effect.

This form of sedation provides you with a feeling of disconnectedness and euphoria. You may even feel a bit giggly and giddy, hence the term “laughing gas.” The inhalant also has analgesic (pain-relieving) properties. When combined with local numbing, it ensures that you will not feel any discomfort or pain throughout your treatment.

One of the biggest benefits of choosing laughing gas is that it wears off quite quickly. After the dental procedure, we will flush with 100% oxygen for 5 minutes to completely flush the nitrous oxide out of your system before leaving. You’ll be able to drive yourself home or even go back to work after your appointment, which makes nitrous oxide very convenient if you have a busy lifestyle.

Oral Conscious Sedation

Oral conscious sedation is a deeper method of sedation and is appropriate for patients with more severe cases of anxiety. It consists of a pill or liquid-based sedative, which you’ll take according to Dr. Cantu’s instructions, usually about an hour before your appointment.

This sedative will make you feel very calm and relaxed. You may feel groggy, or even fall asleep during your procedure. You likely will also experience “anterograde amnesia,” meaning you may not remember much of what happens during your appointment. 

Oral conscious sedation lasts longer than nitrous sedation, however, with effects typically lasting in some form for four to six hours after your consultation, so you will not be able to drive yourself home or return to work after your appointment. You’ll need to make prior travel arrangements to and from our office.

How Sedation Helps Ease Dental Anxiety

Because sedation is proven effective at safely eliminating dental anxiety, Dr.Cantu offers sedation for every appointment at Oak Hill Dental. Whether you need oral surgery, a filling, or just a simple teeth cleaning, we can provide you with sedation to make the experience easier.

Both nitrous oxide and oral conscious sedation help mitigate feelings of fear and anxiety. It also helps decrease discomfort during the procedure and allows you to relax comfortably in the dentist’s chair.

Using sedation, a wide variety of dental anxiety “triggers” can be inhibited, allowing you to feel calm and get the treatment you need. Even if you suffer from severe dental anxiety or dental phobia, we can help.

So don’t wait, and don’t let anxiety and fear of the dentist stop you from caring for your teeth. Contact the team at Oak Hill Dental now to schedule your consultation, and make sure you ask about our sedation options.

Sedation dentistry is perfect for you if:

  • You have a very low pain threshold
  • You cannot sit still in the dentist’s chair during a procedure
  • You have a bad gag reflex
  • You have years’ worth of dental work that needs to be completed
  • You had an extremely painful experience or bad dental experiences in the past


Dr. Mark J. Cantu, DDS
7101 W. Highway 71, Suite A-3
Austin, TX 78735

Hablamos Espanol


Phone: 512-551-5400
Fax: 512-551-5408

Most PPO Dental Insurance Accepted

Office Hours

Monday - Treatment Appt. Only
8 AM - 4 PM
Tuesday – Friday
7:30 AM – 3 PM

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