For a moment, imagine that this is one of the forms your patients fill out at an initial visit:
We understand that each person has unique concerns when it comes to pain management, and would like to give our patients the opportunity to explore all of the anesthetic techniques available in our modern practice. Please read the following paragraphs and make a checkmark next to the one that best describes and addresses your needs:
|1. Please do not get a needle anywhere near me. You can numb my face with a sledgehammer, but you’d better not even let me see the tip of an etchant syringe or I’ll flip. Pain is preferable to an injection in my case. I will be willing to try electroshock treatment or even a couple of frozen teething rings wedged under my lips, but definitely no shots.||With your delicate situation, we have a dental TENS unit available. Two electrodes will be placed in opposite areas of your mouth. We will then run a current of electricity that will fry your noodles allow a fair amount of pain management. Your hand signals will help us control the frequency of the current. TENS feels very similar to sticking your finger in a light socket. Our other non-sharp alternative is called the GumEase, which is a frozen saline-filled ring that numbs the teeth at the roots. If you are not cold sensitive, cryoanesthesia is better than nothing. And it’s warmer than ice cream.|
|2. I am okay with injections, but I don’t want to feel anything. Ever.I will do best with relaxation, especially if nitrous oxide sedation is part of the trip, and then you can very, very gently and slowly do what you must. When Dorothy got sight of Glenda’s wand, her ride somewhere over the rainbow was…over. Please use the Wand on me, but make sure that I never see it.||We’re not supposed to call it that anymore; the official name for this single tooth anesthesia method from Milestone Scientific is the STA System™. Other dentists may momentarily zing you good with the Henke Sass Wolf Ligmaject when they are administering intraligamentary anesthesia, but you’ll find that the STA System is careful and precise. Additionally, the passage of time will seem like nothing as you float off into the happy clouds of laughing gas.|
|3. I like having my cheek shaked and pulled. It takes my mind off of the needle and back to the golden days of dentistry. Oh, to be a kid again.||Because of the inherent post-injection trauma associated with slapping a cheek around like a piece of wet ham, our preference instead is to snap on the VibraJect analgesic syringe clip. You’ll enjoy five times the wiggling in only a quarter of the space.|
|4. The dental visits had better not interfere with my day because I am a very busy person. Needles are fine, a little pain is okay too. Most importantly, my lip should not still feel like it’s on the floor, a la Bill Cosby, for more than an hour after the appointment. I would like something to make the numb feeling go away as fast as possible.||If you can wait until October, 2008 for your dental treatment, OraVerse™, a new anesthetic reversal agent, will be available from the Novalar pharmaceutical company. This additional injection has been shown to accelerate the return to normal sensation and function. It only works if your original anesthetic shot contained the vasoconstrictor epinephrine, but it can pull out the anesthetic stops in less than 90 minutes following the administration of OraVerse.|
No matter which method you prefer, the best way to administer anesthesia is always with a caring touch.
So for all you dentists who mail out postcards to potential patients, please don’t advertise that you’re gentle if you’re not. With all the options available, painful dentistry is pretty much inexcusable.
Brice L. Yoder PhD D.Sc. says
A bit of clarification if I may.
After freezing the gumEase to the proper temperature, the dental practitioner will insert the FDA approved gumEase in the upper and lower sulci of the patient (not on or at the root of the teeth) in accordance with the directions which accompany the gumEase. A regional pain block is thus achieved through the local application of extreme cold to nerves (N) which temporarily inhibits the transmission of pain impulses to the brain.
The gumEase dental device offers the practitioner an effective, alternative form of anesthesia capable of addressing a variety of procedural applications. It has proven to be especially effective with patients who suffer from acute needle phobia.
Wanted to update you on the latest about Oraverse:
“This February at the Chicago Dental Society Midwinter Meeting, Novalar will introduce a drug that reverses the effects of dental anesthesia injections. OraVerse will come in prepackaged inserts for syringes, and it will cost about $12.50 per injection. Patients who dislike the lingering numbness caused by anesthesia will enjoy prompt reversal of the sensation, up to 80 minutes faster than without OraVerse. While the medication was approved by the FDA in May 2008, packaging concerns prevented Novalar from introducing OraVerse at the San Antonio ADA conference in October 2008.”
I have some heart issues and my Doctor recommended that I not use drugs. I first tried the Tens unit at my dentists and the company had a rep for the unit there calabrating and training on the machine. The tens unit was so painfull that you would rather have your teeth pulled. OUCH My next visit the dentist had the gumease units. i am very sensitive to cold but suprisingly they didn’t cause any discomfort. The dentist used three of the gumease thing on me and started to work. I could tell that he was working on me but no pain. He did three cavities and a root canal in different parts of my mouth.NO PAIN. I love them and will never go back to needles or the stupid tens machine.
great post as usual!
Nailah Long says
Where can I buy GumEase? Everywhere I go to online the page either doesn’t exist, the phone number isn’t the same and So on please let me know where to buy this item because my daughter just got braces and SHE has pain.