This refers to taking prescribed medication an hour or so before a dental procedure for calming effect. Oral sedation will make the patient feel drowsy and have a similar effect to amnesia and you may not remember a lot about the procedure, although oral sedatives cannot relieve pain, you will be relaxed when the dentist administers the local anesthesia. Due to the extreme drowsiness effect, you are advised not to drive after the dental surgery.
The sedative medication is delivered through a small needle or catheter placed in a vein and is different from a general anesthesia (unconscious sedation). During IV sedation, you are not asleep but rather in a much safer and more comfortable semi-awake state of reduced anxiety. You will most likely have a little or no memory of the dental procedures that were performed because of the amnesic effect of the medication used to provide the sedation. During IV sedation, you are able to respond to verbal commands, or to a light physical touch, you need no medical assistance to maintain adequate breathing and heart function.