What to Know Before Anesthesia

At Virginia Oral Surgery Specialists, we want to ensure you are as comfortable as possible during your visit, so we offer various sedation options for our patients.


Anesthesiology is the medical specialty concerned with the total care of the surgical patient before, during, and after surgery. With modern technology and advances in medicine, you can rest assured that you’re in good hands with our team of skilled anesthesiologists.

Dr. Dawood is certified by the American National Dental Board of Anesthesiology and by the ADSA(American Dental Society of Anesthesiology) to administer anesthesia.

Types of Anesthesia

There are two kinds of dental anesthesia: local and general.

Local Anesthesia

A local anesthetic numbs a specific area of the mouth and is administered through injections. It is usually used for a dental procedure that is not too invasive, such as a filling, crown, or bridge. Local anesthesia is also known as regional anesthesia.

General Anesthesia

General anesthesia or deep sedation is used for more complex procedures, such as wisdom tooth extractions and dental implants. The anesthetic drugs put the patient to sleep, so they are unaware of and do not feel pain during the medical treatment. General anesthesia is more commonly used in oral surgery procedures.

How is Anesthesia Administered?

There are different ways that anesthesia can be administered, like intravenous sedation (IV), inhaled nitrous oxide (otherwise known as laughing gas), or oral sedation.

The type of anesthesia that is right for you will be determined by your surgeon based on the procedure being performed and your medical history.

IV sedation is the most common anesthesia used at VOSS for surgical procedures. This is a safe and highly effective way to help you relax and feel more comfortable. Intravenous sedation is administered through a small needle placed in your arm. You will be awake during the procedure, but you may not remember much of it afterward.

Our anesthesia team will continuously monitor your vital signs (i.e., heart rate, blood pressure, etc.) and adjust the medications accordingly to keep you safe and comfortable. You will be closely monitored by a skilled physician anesthesiologist throughout.

Important Information for Patients Having IV Sedation

  • Do not eat or drink anything eight hours prior to surgery with the exception of plain water. 
  • Make sure to arrange a ride to and from our office on the day of your surgery. You will not be able to drive home or operate heavy machinery. 
  • Please have on hand some of the suggested foods after your surgery. Please refer to the recommended food list.
  • Please have a responsible adult at home to care for you on surgery. 
  • For mothers who are still breastfeeding, please be aware that you will not be able to do so for 12 hours after intravenous sedation. Please consult your lactation consultant or pediatrician if you need further guidance. 

Contact Us if You Have Questions

If you have any questions about our pre-anesthetic instructions or your surgical procedure, please do not hesitate to call our office at 703-520-2300. Our team of anesthesiologists and surgical specialists is here to answer any of your questions and help you feel comfortable and confident about your procedure.

Book Appointment

The first step towards getting the beautiful, healthy smile you’ve always wanted is to schedule an appointment with our office. You can contact us by phone or submit the appointment request form online and our office staff will contact you to confirm your appointment.