October 31, 2011

Painless Shots!

“Nothing personal doc, but I hate dentists.”

“When I was a child, I had a dentist that hurt me so bad I never got over it.”

“I’d rather have a baby than get dental work.”

“I have a really high pain tolerance for everything but dental work.”

“Can you just put me out, I really cannot stand that needle.”

“Doctor, do you have gas?”

In the past, a dentist’s nightmare was that patient who had a fear of the needle. We inject patients all day long, over and over again, exactly the same way, in exactly the same places. Most of the injections slip in without any discomfort at all, and you are a hero. Others sting like heck.  Go figure.

I always thought it was a factor of how fast you put the anesthetic into the tissue so we went out and bought a CompuDent (Wand) to help our pediatric patients.  It actually works great! I call it God’s gift to the pediatric dentist.  But the tubing costs a lot more than regular anesthetic, so we reserve it for only those real cry-babies who need it.

Now we no longer have to use fancy equipment to coax someone into getting numb because of the possible discomfort associated with the injection inside their mouth.  The newest technology in local anesthetics is called Onpharma Onset.  We were the first in SW florida to used this technology and have been using it since January 2011.  It is very simple technology and has been employed in other medical fields for many years.  It involved placing a small amount of buffering agent called sodium bicarbonate into the local anesthetic before we inject it into your mouth.  Because of storage problems, local anesthetics are made acidic.  This acid pH is what slows down the anesthetic and makes it sting upon injection.  Now that we are buffering our local anesthetic before each and every injection, the dentists at Cape Dental Care are improving the comfort of our dental patients.