Dr. Matt here. Doc’ do I need a shot? Yes, you will need some local anesthetic to be comfortable during the planned procedure. These words bring people a lot of anxiety. It may be a specific fear or a generalized thing. Either way it can be a treatment hurdle for some people. Some patients develop coping mechanisms to distract themselves during the numbing process while others in addition use medications to alter their current consciousness (Intravenous sedation, oral sedation, and nitrous oxide).
Anesthetics are similar to the drug Cocaine, discovered in 1860. The early locals of the 1900’s were “Novocaine” like and after 1950 “Lidocaine” like. There are other additives that increase or decrease the depth, speed, and time of the desired effect. One such additive is Epinephrine. Your body knows it as adrenaline. It speeds up your heart and may give you a racy feeling when injected. There are dozens of “caines” to choose from and a lot of thought goes into the selection by the Doctor.
Personally, I am very thankful that we have so many great local anesthetics to choose from. Most of the time patients get through the numbing process and get their work done without having any complications. I cannot imagine what Dental treatment was like prior to the discovery of locals. So, when you say, “Doc’, do I need a shot?” be comforted to know that you can do it and all is good.
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