Will You Be Put to Sleep During Dental Implant Surgery?

Written by:

Dr. Justin Soon

Published on:

Will You Be Put to Sleep During Dental Implant Surgery?

Dental implant surgery refers to making incisions in your gums to expose the jaw bone and allow implant placement that acts as tooth roots to artificial teeth. It is an invasive procedure, and the entire process takes several months. This involves the placement of crowns, dentures or dental bridges as a replacement for your missing or damaged natural teeth.

If you’re planning to have this oral surgery and have a dental phobia or low pain tolerance, you may wonder if you will be put to sleep during the surgery. Like any other surgical procedure, this depends on the individual patient and the complexity of the surgery.

Read on to learn more.

Will You Sleep During Dental Implant Surgery?

As mentioned, this depends on your preference and the complexity of the procedure. Typically, local anaesthesia is used, but patients with a low pain tolerance or undergoing a more complex surgery may be put to sleep.

3 Primary Types Of Anesthesia Used In Performing Dental Implant Surgery

Three types of anaesthesia can be used for this dental implant procedure, including:

Local Anaesthesia

This is the usual anaesthetics used in a dental implant, especially if a patient only needs a single implant. It numbs the area around your mouth, and you will be awake and should not feel any pain. However, you may feel a little pressure when your dentist places the implant.

The effects of local anaesthesia lasts only for a few hours. And you should be able to drive home after the procedure.

Sedation Anaesthesia

Also called conscious sedation, this is used for patients with dental anxiety, needing multiple implants or patients with small mouths. It involves taking medication to make you drowsy and relaxed, but you will still be awake. You may not remember much of the procedure after as it can cause short-term memory loss.

There are different types of sedation, such as:

  • Inhalation Sedation Or Minimal Sedation
    With this sedation option, you will breathe in a medication called nitrous oxide or “laughing gas” through a mask that helps you relax.

  • Oral Sedation Or Moderate Sedation
    This type of sedation requires you to take a pill about an hour before the procedure, making you drowsy.

  • IV Sedation
    The form of sedation uses medication directly injected into your veins through an IV to make you drowsy and relaxed. You will put to deep relaxation but still be awake and can respond to your dentist’s commands. An anaesthesiologist usually supervises it and sometimes asks you to avoid consuming foods and drinks at least six hours before the procedure. The level of consciousness can be monitored and adjusted throughout the surgery.

General Anaesthesia

General anaesthesia, deep sedation, complete sedation or sleep dentistry is the least commonly used anaesthesia type because it requires a whole team of dental professionals. It is used for more complex surgeries that require multiple implants or if you have a fear of needles and cannot tolerate sedation. You will be completely asleep during the operation and not feel any pain. An anaesthesiologist will administer the anaesthesia and monitor your vital signs during the surgery. It may take 24 hours or more for the effects to wear off, so you will need someone to assist you in the dental clinic until you get home.

How Does Your Dentist Select Which Anaesthesia To Use?

There are a few considerations your dentist keep in mind when choosing which anaesthesia to use in this dental treatment, such as:

  • The number of implants you need
    In general, a single implant requires local anaesthesia, while multiple implants may require sedation or general anaesthesia. The more implants you need, the longer the surgery will take.

  • The complexity of the surgery
    If the surgery is complex and requires extensive work, your dentist may opt for sedation or general anaesthesia. This is because the procedure can be lengthy. And it may be more comfortable for you to receive these types of anaesthesia.

  • The type of implant procedure
    More complex procedures, such as a sinus lift or bone grafting, may require sedation or general anaesthesia due to their invasive nature.

  • Your fear of needles
    If you fear needles or dentists, your dentist may opt for sedation or general anaesthesia to avoid anxiety during the procedure.

  • Your pain tolerance
    If you have a low pain threshold, your dentist may use sedation or general anaesthesia to help you relax during the procedure.

  • The type of implant being placed
    The size and type of implant being placed will also be considered when choosing which anaesthesia to use. Smaller implants placed above the gum line may only require local anaesthesia, while larger implants placed below the gum line may require sedation or general anaesthesia.

Are There Precautions When Using Anaesthesia?

The following are some of the precautions you should take when getting any type of anaesthesia:

  • Have someone to drive you home after the procedure when receiving sedation or general anaesthesia.

  • Do not drink alcohol or smoke for at least 24 hours before the procedure. This may interact with the anaesthesia and cause complications.

  • In the case of sedation or general anaesthesia, your dentist may ask you not to eat or drink anything hours before the surgery because your body’s reflexes are temporarily stopped. If you have any food in your stomach, it may cause vomiting.

  • Your dentist may ask you to stop taking certain medications you are currently taking, such as aspirins and other blood thinners.

  • Some vitamins or supplements may also interact with the anaesthesia. Talk to your dentist if you are taking these during your consultation interview.

  • Let your dentist know if you have any allergies, as these may cause problems when using anaesthesia.

  • If you have any health conditions, such as high blood pressure or heart problems, let your dentist know before the dental procedure so they can take the necessary precautions.

How Long Do The Effects Of Dental Anaesthesia Last?

The effects of dental anaesthesia depend on the type of anaesthesia and the type of sedation used. Here’s a quick summary:

  • Local anaesthesia
    This depends on the medication, but it usually lasts one to three hours.

  • Nitrous oxide
    The effects of this gas wear off within minutes after the gas is turned off.

  • Oral sedation
    This depends on the medication used, but it usually lasts four to six hours.

  • IV sedation
    The effects of this type of sedation can last for several hours after the procedure.

  • General anaesthesia
    The effects of this type of anaesthesia can last for 24 hours or more.

Final Thoughts

A dental implant is an excellent tooth restoration option for people suffering from tooth loss. It has many benefits, both aesthetically and functionally. The dental surgery involved is usually performed using local anaesthesia. But, other types may be used depending on a patient’s case. These include nitrous oxide, oral sedation, IV dental sedation, and general anaesthesia that will put you to sleep. Whatever type of anaesthesia you receive, there are some precautions you should take to avoid complications.

If you are considering dental implants to achieve a more beautiful smile and improve the quality of your life but have many concerns, call us for an initial consultation.

During your dental appointment at Karrinyup Dental Centre, one of the dentists will go over all your options with you and help you make the right decision for your smile. This includes assessing your oral health and determining which type of anaesthesia is required in your case. Then they will create a customised treatment plan for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

They are designed to mimic the appearance and function of your natural teeth or real teeth. This is because they are placed directly into the jawbone, providing a strong and stable foundation for replacement teeth.
This question differs from person to person. Some people find dental implants more painful, while others find tooth extractions more painful. After the anaesthesia wears off, implants may cause more discomfort than extractions, requiring pain medications for a few days.
The procedure or the implantation process lasts for 1 to 2 hours. However, this can vary depending on different factors. Some examples are the number of implants, the type of anaesthesia, and the complexity of your case.
The overall price of dental implants depends on the number of implants needed, the type of anaesthesia used, any additional procedures necessary (such as bone graft surgery or a sinus lift), and other factors. But on average, it ranges from $3,000 to $5,500 per tooth. Based on the 2020 national dental fee survey, it can cost you up to $5,514 for a single implant in Australia. It’s recommended to contact your dentist for a more accurate quote.
Dr. Justin Soon


Dr. Justin Soon

Dr. Justin completed his Bachelor of Dental Surgery at the University of Western Australia. Dr Justin completed his surgical implant training under the mentorship of Dr. Glen Liddelow, Dr. Graham Carmichael, and Dr. Brent Allan at the Branemark Centre.

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