As the field of dentistry advances, dental work becomes more effective. Patients come to experience more and more comfort both during and after dental procedures. Dentists often administer anesthesia to enhance patient comfort. Two of the most common forms of dental anesthesia are topical and local (or “freezing”). You may have heard of dental freezing before, and this guide will teach you everything you need to know.

Why Dentists Perform Freezing

For minor procedures, the combination of topical and local anesthesia is more than sufficient to put the patient at ease. Topical anesthesia, usually in the form of a gel or paste, is minimally invasive, though it often penetrates only slightly beneath the skin. Local freezing is designed to numb the nerves deep within the jaw. Local freezing allows the dentist to perform his or her work quickly and comfortably.

The Local Anaesthetic Freezing Process

First, either the dentist or another care provider will apply a topical anesthetic to a small area, usually on the gums. This prepares the mouth for a quick poke, or the injection of local anesthetic commonly known as “freezing.” Dental freezing inhibits nerve impulses so that your mouth can’t “tell” your brain if there is discomfort. You may find it takes a little longer for the freezing to be administered at our office.  By slowly adding the anaesthetic, we have found our patients are much more comfortable rather than injecting quickly.  Dentists deliver enough anesthetic to last well beyond the length of the procedure, just to make sure it doesn’t wear off too soon. 

What to Expect After Freezing

After the procedure is complete, you will probably experience a numb, “lop-sided” sensation around your mouth area. Anesthesia usually lasts for two to three hours after it is administered. You may eat or drink if necessary, even if you’re still feeling numb. Be careful, though, not to burn or bite yourself. To be safe, eat soft foods at a mild temperature until the numbness goes away.

At one time or another, everybody needs a dentist. If you need a cavity filled or a root canal, or any number of other procedures, you can plan for a comfortable, quick visit. One way Asante Dental helps patients remain comfortable is with the administration of local anesthesia, known as dental freezing. You can be confident and informed during your next dental visit, now that you understand all about dental freezing. Schedule an appointment with our dental professionals, here