Dental Sedation

Pain-Free Intravenous Sedation for Dental Treatment

Millersneuk is a key referral centre for effective dental patient anxiety management in Scotland. We are experts at treating nervous and phobic patients, providing calm, anxiety-free dental sedation for NHS and private dental patients.

We offer a wide range of dental sedation solutions including intravenous (IV) sedation and regional analgesia; for anxious children we have a dedicated childrens’ dental therapist who can make coming to the dentist fun!

Find out about painless dental sedation

(0141) 777-7511

What is Intravenous (IV) Sedation?

Intravenous sedation is a modern, safe, predictable and effective way to reduce anxiety in dental patients, making potentially stressful dental procedures more pleasant for you.

Who will sedate me?

Our dentist Philip Church will administer intravenous sedation, having undertaken suitable intravenous sedation training both in hospital and practice environments.

Philip is assisted by a dental nurse trained in the care and monitoring of patients receiving treatment under intravenous sedation.

What is the sedative?

The sedative used is called Midazolam. It is a member of the benzodiazepine group of drugs and is the main agent recommended for use in intravenous sedation in the UK. Midazolam is well suited for intravenous sedation as it brings about a general state of relaxation. The recovery period is smooth and quite short, with no feelings of nausea.

How does it feel to be sedated?

You will feel very relaxed and possibly sleepy, with a general sense of detachment from what is going on. During your procedure, you stay conscious, so you do not lose vital protective reflexes (such as the ability to cough). After your procedure, you are likely to have little or no recollection of having the treatment carried out.

How is the sedative given?

The sedative is given through a small plastic tube (cannula) put into a vein on the back of your hand or inside your elbow. The insertion of the cannula is very quick and simple. The sedative is given in small amounts over a period of time until you are sufficiently sedated for the procedure to begin. You will be monitored from the start of the procedure by our nurses who have specific and recognised training in the care of patients receiving treatment under sedation. Medical monitoring equipment is used to record your pulse, blood pressure, blood oxygen levels throughout your treatment as well as during the recovery period.

What happens after I am sedated?

A local anaesthetic is still needed to numb the area of surgery, and is given slowly and carefully before your procedure begins. After your operation, a recovery period is necessary during which the immediate effects of the sedation start to wear off. Your monitoring will be continued during this time. All relevant postoperative instructions (including any prescribed medicines) will be discussed with you and your escort. When we are satisfied that you have recovered enough, you will be discharged home in your escort’s care.

How long does the sedation last?

The length of dental sedation depends on the treatment you need; we aim to keep the sedation at a satisfactory level for the duration of your procedure, and you will only be discharged home when you have recovered enough from the sedation. The effects of the sedative will be present for the next 24 hours, so it is essential that you follow our postoperative instructions.

Are there any risks involved?

The administration of any drug carries some risk: the risks associated with intravenous sedation as described are very small and can be further minimised by following our pre- and postoperative instructions. A very small number of patients are not suitable for treatment under intravenous sedation for medical reasons.

Please discuss any concerns you have by contacting Millersneuk Dental Practice: telephone (0141) 777-7511 or email

How does sedation compare with general anaesthesia?

Intravenous sedation is a form of conscious sedation as, unlike general anaesthesia, the aim is not to bring about a complete loss of consciousness (including loss of protective reflexes). General anaesthesia can now only be administered in a hospital setting; intravenous sedation is an inherently more pleasant way of having potentially stressful dental treatment carried out. It is especially effective if you are apprehensive as the sedative’s action actually removes anxiety and so makes dental treatment much more comfortable.

Before your dental sedation procedure at Millersneuk

You must ensure that you are accompanied by a responsible adult who will escort you home after your procedure and arrange for you to be looked after for the following 24 hours (please do not bring any children with you).

  • Do not eat or drink anything for three hours before your appointment time – before this, you should only have a light, non-fatty meal.
  • Do not drink alcohol on the day of your procedure.
  • Give us details of any changes to your medical history or daily medications.
  • Continue to take all routine medications (including inhalers) at the usual times, unless you have been specifically advised otherwise.
  • If you feel unwell before your appointment, report this to us, because illness may affect your treatment.
  • Wear loose-fitting and comfortable clothing, with sleeves which can easily be pulled up beyond your elbows.
  • Clean your teeth thoroughly before coming in for your procedure.

After your dental sedation procedure at Millersneuk

  • Your escort should take you home by private car, rather than public transport.
  • Rest for a few hours at home and take the rest of the day quietly.
  • Eat light and easily digestible food for the rest of the day.
  • Take any medicines which have been prescribed for you.
  • For 24 hours after receiving intravenous sedation: Do not drive any vehicle, operate any machinery or use any domestic appliance.
  • Do not drink alcohol.
  • Do not return to work, make any important decisions or sign any legal documents.