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Getting tooth removed next week-some questions about IV sedation



Jul 15, 2018
I'm getting my wisdom tooth removed on September 24th (huge cavity). I have generalized anxiety disorder and OCD (was diagnosed in 2006), so I feel like IV sedation would be the best option.

But I'm kind of between a rock and a hard place because I have an extreme fear of the feeling of losing control which has caused me to have a phobia of anesthesia/being put to sleep.

I've been reading many people's success stories on here, and it seems that most people drift off to sleep when having the IV sedation or they at least don't remember the procedure. I like the thought of sleeping through my tooth extraction, but, like I said, I also have a fear of losing control (OCD is a strange thing!).

My mother has had two wisdom teeth removed before (both times with a Valium drip), and she told me that she didn't fall asleep either time but that the Valium kept her very relaxed. Like I said, I think it would be most ideal if I was able to sleep through the procedure, but I also feel that I could manage being awake as long as the Valium keeps me very relaxed. I've been obsessing over which method would best suit me. I know that I don't want to fall asleep and then wake up during the procedure. I should've addressed these concerns with the dentist at my consultation, but I had to wait a long time to see him and was ready to get out of there.

So I have a few questions:
1. Is there anyone else on here who has been diagnosed with OCD and/or an anxiety disorder? Did you sleep through the entire extraction, wake up during the middle of it, or stay awake the whole time?
2. Is it common for some people to stay awake during the extraction?
3. How can I ensure that I won't wake up during the procedure?
4. What does it feel like waking up from the procedure? How groggy can I expect to be?
5. What's the best way to avoid nausea afterwards?

Thanks in advance.


Super Moderator
Staff member
Sep 18, 2017
Hi nutfig,

IV sedation is an interesting thing. You are actually awake during the procedure, but very very relaxed. You are still able to communicate with your dental team and are conscious. The important part is, that the medication that is involved causes memory loss. That is why the most people do not remember anything and feel like falling asleep and waking up when the procedure is over. IV sedation can be dosed very specifically, your dental team can either make sure for you not to remember anything afterwards or keep the dose low so that there are still parts you can recall. That is the case when you read about someone ´waking up´ during the procedure. So wether you wish not to remember anything or otherwise, the best way to go would be to talk to your dentist about what you wish and make sure they can acommodate your preferences.
As to valium, oral sedation is one ot the less predictable sedation forms as every person reacts a little differently. if you like to try it, it might be s good idea to test it out if you can (talk to your dentist).
Another good sedation option, if you wish to stay in control would be laughing gas, if your dental office offers it.

Hope you get some replies about ocd from other users.

All the best wishes


Well-known member
Jul 1, 2018
I had general anesthesia with my wisdom teeth removal, but I had all four impacted. I actually woke up during the surgery. I couldn't feel anything, but I can still vividly remember it 17 years later. I remember the surgeon telling me to go back to sleep.

When I had my root canal, I had nitrous oxide, which is conscious sedation. I was super relaxed, but could still respond if spoken to. I was aware what was going on, but kind of drifted. If I concentrated, I could focus on everything that was happening.

I do not have OCD, but I absolutely hate the feeling of being out of control.

Now, my husband is what I would consider undiagnosed OCD, to the point that he refuses to be under general anesthesia. He had a knee replacement surgery fully awake, with just a spinal block. He had his impacted wisdom teeth removed with a local anesthetic and conscious sedation.