Oral Health Resources | 20 October, 2022

All About Sedation With Dr Kate Arlidge

Feeling nervous about dental treatment? We've got you covered.

Meet Dr Kate Arlidge from Lumino Christchurch City, who offers sedation to help put her patients at ease.

Kate has been practising dentistry for almost 12 years. She wanted a career that was people-orientated and challenged her on a daily basis. 

"I like working with my hands and being creative so I thought dentistry would suit me well. I have to admit, I am a terrible patient myself so I understand how those who walk through my door are feeling," says Kate, who has worked in a variety of roles from private to public practice.

Kate has been offering IV sedation for just over a year but has been doing other alternatives for about 8 years.

"IV is far more predictable and patients have a less variable experience with it."

Sedation helps with dental anxiety by reducing the anxiety experienced by a patient during their procedure. It helps relax patients to manage procedures that they may otherwise have trouble with. Sedation can also cause a person's memory to forget the procedure that they have had done reducing the after-effects of the procedure being carried out as they have little memory of feeling anxious. Minimising anxiety at the dentist can aid in patients having less anxiety around visits and procedures and reduce the barrier to accessing dental care due to anxiety.

"Anxiety doesn't need to be a barrier to dentistry. In modern dentistry, there are ways to manage anxiety and we endeavor to work with patients to work out the best way to manage anxiety. I myself am a very anxious patient (go figure!) so I know the embarrassment and barriers that come with that. The hardest part is walking through the front door, once you've done that, we take over and look after you."

The main piece of advice that Kate gives to her patients is that teeth are there to be used. Looking after them today can save so much in the future. As Kate says, we're here to help and you don't need to be embarrassed, we will work together to work out the best outcome and process for you. Dentistry doesn't have to be scary.