Tooth treatment under anesthesia
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Anesthetic treatments are not the norm, but there are patient groups that give the dentist no choice. This is especially true for young children who have problems with multiple teeth. When awake, a renovation would take a very long time and the child would have to be very willing to cooperate. Despite the honest efforts of all those affected, dentists know: Unfortunately, it does not work, and if it does, it works far too rarely. But even patients with physical and mental impairments find it difficult to access relaxed help. For this very reason, incubation anesthesia is seen as the only way to carry out lengthy dental treatment at rest.
We inform you here about the functionality, procedure and costs as well as the risks of anesthesia treatment.
How anesthesia works
In the anesthetic itself, the patient sleeps deeply and is physically immobile. It is important that he remains absolutely painless with general anesthesia. While the somewhat disturbing gag reflex remains active during twilight sleep (sedation), there is no physical function in the anesthetic. The respiratory tract is protected from saliva and blood by a breathing tube. A permanent presence of an anesthetist and anesthetist is a prerequisite for carrying out dental treatment with general anesthesia. Both check circulation and breathing throughout the procedure.
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Procedure of dental treatment with anesthesia
Anesthesia at the dentist enables extensive and unpleasant dental treatments to survive without pain and fear. The patient is put into a deep sleep-like state with the help of anesthetics in order not to expose sensitive nerve pathways and fibers in the tooth root and jaw to constant irritation. So that pressure, noise, shocks and the sight of the pointed instruments do not cause panic and the treatment does not have to be experienced consciously, the anesthetic technique offers many phobia-prone patients a real alternative.
The type of anesthesia used in dental treatment depends on the patient and the scope of work. With heavy treatments, complex and long operations on teeth, jaws or roots are necessary. It is not uncommon for this method to prove itself for the placement of dental implants on the lower and upper jaw. If several wisdom teeth are to be pulled at once, general anesthesia is the preferred operative support. If the local anesthetic does not work deeply enough, if the patient has an organ disease or allergies to the anesthetic, the dentist can also consider general anesthesia.
Anesthesia is not performed at the dentist’s appointment by the attending dentist, but by the commissioned anesthetist, who is present throughout the treatment and monitors the patient. First of all, this is examined, a medical history form is filled in and information about possible risks is given. If, from the anesthetist’s point of view, there are no objections to anesthesia and the patient declares his consent and possible assumption of costs, the planning of the medical intervention starts. On the day of treatment, the patient must appear sober before being put under anesthesia. During the entire treatment, the anesthetist monitors the patient’s vital functions and stops the anesthetic as soon as the dentist has finished his work. He wakes up slowly, but is not allowed to actively take part in road traffic or operate machines and heavy equipment on this day. A day of rest is appropriate for relaxation.
As a rule, the patient recovers from the anesthesia very quickly after the procedure and is quickly fit again. However, no heavy work should be done on the day of the surgery in order not to additionally irritate the sensitive environment in the mouth. In the case of light sedations such as with nitrous oxide, the anesthetic subsides immediately after the gas supply has ended. This variant is suitable for short interventions in children and small children or in exceptional cases for adults. After the treatment, the healing process starts – your dentist checks the progress in routine checks.
Cost of anesthesia
Depending on the effort, different accounting rates are used. The costs incurred differ according to the preferred method and the individual effort of the treating dentist. Ask your dentist for advice.
Assumption of costs by health insurance?
Dental treatment is not part of the health insurer’s service catalog under all conditions. In certain exceptional cases, however, statutory health insurance covers the costs:
- In the case of medically detectable allergies to local anesthetics or organic diseases that do not allow local anesthesia
- For children under the age of twelve, provided that they cannot be treated under local anesthesia
- For anxious patients who can present a psychiatric certificate from their therapist
- For patients and people with disabilities who do not cooperate with treatment due to their physical or mental condition
- For patients who are at risk of endangering themselves during treatment
- For extensive dental surgery that, due to its size, cannot be performed under local anesthesia
The costs of sedation (twilight sleep) are considered a private benefit and are not covered.
Despite constant monitoring during the modern anesthetic procedure, the body’s own reactions occur in rare cases, the residual risk of which cannot be ruled out 100%.
- cramp-like glottis closure
- Cardiovascular arrest
- Inhalation of stomach contents in the lungs, which can later lead to pneumonia (aspiration)
- Formation and spread of thromboses (blood clots) via the bloodstream (embolism)
- allergic reactions to anesthetics up to anaphylactic shock
- Nausea or vomiting after general anesthesia
- Genetic derailment of calcium metabolism (hyperthermia) as a direct reaction to inhaled anesthetics (other than nitrous oxide), stress or muscle relaxants – with pronounced consequences: strong muscle contractions that cause an increase in core body temperature and possibly lead to loss of muscle tissue or fatal kidney or circulatory failure have as a consequence
- Difficulty swallowing, hoarseness, tooth damage and, in the most extreme case, vocal cord paralysis in response to the introduction of the tube under general anesthesia
- Bruising (hematomas), vein irritation, nerve injuries or inflammation of the venous access at the injection site.
- Paralysis symptoms on extremities, which in most cases disappear quickly, but can arise during the procedure due to the location of the nerves.
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