Getting dental implants can be a great option for restoring your smile, but you may be concerned about the actual procedure. Your dentist or oral surgeon will help you choose the right anesthesia option for the type of procedure you will be having and for your comfort level. Here is a look at some of the options available to you.

General Anesthesia

General anesthesia is an option for more complicated dental implant surgeries. In some cases, a bone graft may be required to prepare the area to receive an implant. If this is the case for you, your oral surgeon will use general anesthesia. This anesthesia option is what you might expect when going in for any other type of surgery, and it puts you into a deep sleep while the procedure is performed. Because you won't be awake, you won't feel any pain or discomfort until after you wake up from the anesthesia.

Local Anesthesia

For simple dental implant procedures that don't require a bone graft, your dentist may recommend local anesthetic. This option numbs the area where the procedure will be performed, but leaves you awake and aware of your surroundings while the implants are put in place. Local anesthesia does not require hospitalization, and you can typically go home after the implant procedure is completed. You may feel some discomfort during the procedure, but you can communicate any pain you feel to your dentist during the procedure in case more local anesthetic is needed.

Sedation Dentistry

Sedation dentistry is similar to general anesthesia, but it can be performed in the dentist's office instead of in a hospital setting. This method allows you to relax during the procedure so you can feel more at ease. It is ideal for anyone getting a dental implant without a bone graft, and it is especially helpful if you have any fears or phobias about dental work. There are several levels of sedation dentistry, but you are actually awake during all of them. If you've ever been given nitrous oxide during a dental procedure, you've use a form of sedation dentistry. Your dentist or oral surgeon can review all the options for this form of anesthesia to find the right one for your comfort level.

Remember that you may need to have someone drive you home after your dental implant procedure, depending on the type of anesthesia that is used. Even if you opt for local anesthetic, having someone drive you may make you feel more comfortable. Once your dental implant procedure is complete, be sure to follow your dentist's instructions for pain management and maintaining your new dental work.