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Ways to make local anesthetic easier and more effective

krlovesherkids777

krlovesherkids777

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Wanted to put this out there to dentists and patients here on DFC.

Wondering is there anything we can do as patients to make local more effective or easier? I found out last time I went which I didn't know that eating ahead of time was something that helps .. never knew that? also I noticed that I was a little more nervous and didn't do my regular breathing exercise and felt the difference. Is there anything else we can do to make things easier..

Anything the dentists can do to make it easier /more effective for us. ?
 
Dr. Daniel

Dr. Daniel

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hi,

in the end, pain is a subjective thing, it is not just the local anesthetic that determines whether the patient feels pain or not but also many more factors and one of them is the patient’s physical condition.

I don’t know any direct linkage between eating before treatment and the effectiveness of the local anesthesia. What I do know from literature and experience that it is important that the patient feels physically fit to cope with the dental procedure, so if the patient is hungry, extremely tired, sick and so forth, it will be very difficult for them to be treated, every little sensation will be magnified and difficult for them.
 
kitkat

kitkat

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In my experience, both injecting slowly and giving a little bit of anesthetic and then waiting and going back to give the rest once I’m already numb seems to make a huge difference in comfort. I never had a dentist do a 2 part injection before my current dentist so the first time she did it that way, I was a little stressed about it (seemed like more opportunity for potential pain) until she explained that I shouldn’t feel anything because I was already numb from the first injection. Focusing on slow breathing definitely seems to help. My dentist usually tells me to close my mouth a little bit just before injecting which seems to release some tension and make things more comfortable. Pep talks seem to help (at least from a psychological stand point). Sometimes as she’s injecting she will say things like “I’ll be real gentle” or “I’ll go nice and slow.” She’s always been pretty honest with me and if she thinks that I might feel anything at all she will warn me about a small pinch but if she’s confident that I won’t feel it then she says “I don’t expect you to feel this” which puts my mind at ease (that’s usually the second injection after I’m already somewhat numb). She always offers me topical anesthesia prior to injecting but I always turn it down (I don’t like it or feel like I need it). I only use it if she strongly encourages it which she only has a couple of times.
 
C

comfortdentist

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Communicate with me. I will adjust what I do based on your needs.
 
krlovesherkids777

krlovesherkids777

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Thank you so much @Dr. Daniel That makes a lot of sense in eating and feeling better physically you are better able to cope with things and make it easier to be treated. @kitkat Definitely great tips.. slowly is the best.. and my previous dentist would really go slowly and talk me through it like yours did. I know my dentist now means well and is quite gentle. just a quieter personality and is there with needle in hand like "ready"..and I"m thinking.. hmmm. I'll do my best, while trying to just remember to breath and be as chill as I can.. @comfortdentist . Thanks for the reminder of just asking . I know when I ask about things. My dentist always is considerate of my thoughts and requests. its just the thought of being a bother.. but that's my own anxiety .
 
kitkat

kitkat

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Thank you so much @Dr. Daniel That makes a lot of sense in eating and feeling better physically you are better able to cope with things and make it easier to be treated. @kitkat Definitely great tips.. slowly is the best.. and my previous dentist would really go slowly and talk me through it like yours did. I know my dentist now means well and is quite gentle. just a quieter personality and is there with needle in hand like "ready"..and I"m thinking.. hmmm. I'll do my best, while trying to just remember to breath and be as chill as I can.. @comfortdentist . Thanks for the reminder of just asking . I know when I ask about things. My dentist always is considerate of my thoughts and requests. its just the thought of being a bother.. but that's my own anxiety .
My dentist used to give me more pep talks than she does now. Over the last few years, she just says “ok let’s get you nice and numb” or “let’s get you numbed up” and then will always say “small pinch” just before she pokes me. I never actually feel a pinch but I can feel the prick sometimes of the needle but it’s not really painful it’s more like a pressure sensation...but that verbal cue that she’s about to poke me is helpful. If I’m more nervous/shaky she will give me a stronger pep talk.
 
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