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Sedation Dentistry in Encinitas, CA

Prevent Dental Anxiety With  Relaxation Tips & Sedation

Are you worried about your trip to the dentist? Does the idea of sitting in a dentist’s chair make you feel nervous? Do you postpone dental cleanings and checkups because of your anxiety or stress? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then our caring dentists and staff at McElroy Smiles By Design can help.

With our amenities, relaxation techniques, and sedation options, our sedation dentists can transform your dentist visit into a calming and enjoyable experience. At McElroy Smiles By Design! Our sedation dentists offer relaxing and effective pain-free dental care to patients in Encinitas, San Diego, Solana Beach, and other cities throughout California!

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Our Comfort Amenities

Our entire team at McElroy Smiles By Design wants you to feel relaxed and comfortable during your visit. To help you feel at ease while you wait to see our Encinitas, CA sedation dentists, we offer a selection of beverages – including tea, coffee, hot chocolate, juices, and bottled water.

You can also enjoy access to extra complimentary amenities before and during your dental appointment, including:

  • Wi-Fi services
  • Flat screen cable TV
  • Music
  • Blankets
  • Lumbar pillows

These amenities are available for any friends or family who may accompany you on your visit to our Encinitas dental office, as well.

After treatment, we will give you warm towels, so you can freshen up before continuing with your day. In short, your comfort is one of our top priorities every moment you are with us! To learn more about our comfort amenities, call us at 760-230-6638, or click here to take advantage of our $99 Dr. McElroy New Patient Dental Health Exam.

Relaxation Techniques

In our open and caring setting, our dentists are professionals who understand and sympathize with your dental anxiety. We work to make you feel at ease, not only by using our expertise and skill in dentistry but through our efforts to take care of your emotional requirements.

If you have any questions or concerns about how our Encinitas, CA, sedation dentists can help you overcome anxiety and fear, please don’t hesitate to call us at 760-230-6638. Whether you opt for sedation or not, when you visit our Encinitas dental office, you can reduce your anxiety with these time-tested techniques:

Tell Us How You Feel – Don’t let embarrassment or shyness stop you from sharing your fears with us. Our compassionate dentists and staff understand dental anxiety, and we want to know when you feel nervous. That way, we can take steps to help you feel more at ease.

Talk To Us About Your Procedure – It’s normal to feel nervous if you don’t know what’s about to happen! To help you avoid experiencing fear of the unknown, we can explain exactly what will happen during your procedure. At McElroy Smiles By Design, we welcome you to ask as many questions as you need. We can also talk you through the steps of your procedure as we perform them, so you always know exactly what is about to happen.

Bring Your Headphones – Music acts as a relaxant, and it can also drown out any fear-producing noises. Enjoying some calming music during your appointment may lessen your anxiety.

Agree On A Signal – Some people fear that their dentist won’t realize they’re in pain during treatment. You can reduce this fear by deciding on a “pause please” hand signal with our dentists.

Request A Throat Spray – Throat sprays such as Vicks® Chloraseptic Throat Spray can control the gag reflex. A couple of sprays will often keep the reflex in check for about an hour or so.

Sedation Options

Our dental office possesses a range of “No-Fear” sedation dentistry options for your peace of mind. With our sedation options, even the most fearful of patients find themselves relaxed throughout their visit to McElroy Smiles By Design.

Nitrous Oxide Gas Sedation – Studies show that nitrous oxide gas (better known as laughing gas) is the most effective option for scared patients. More often than not, a person who arrives at their dental appointment anxious is visibly relaxed after one or two breaths of nitrous gas.

Oral Conscious Relaxation Dentistry – Oral conscious sedation dentistry (the little “sleep-through-your-dentistry” pill) has become the most common technique in North America to allay dental patients’ anxieties. The method is not difficult and does not require needles.

These medications produce such a soothing encounter that the majority of patients do not recall much about their visit. Oral sedation dentistry permits you to remain conscious throughout the whole treatment, but patients most likely won’t be able to remember much of it.

IV Sedation Dentistry –. IV sedation dentistry offers more reliable and deeper sedation than either of the options listed above. Less than 1% of dentists are certified to provide such service. Dr. McElroy was among the first doctors in California to be certified to administer IV sedation. To this day, he remains dedicated to providing safe, supervised dental sedation for your benefit at our Encinitas dental office.


Frequently Asked Questions

Is dental sedation safe?

As long as the medication is administered by a licensed dentist, you have nothing to worry about. We’ll monitor your vital signs throughout the procedure to ensure they remain at a normal level. If any problem is detected, we can stop your treatment and begin reversing the sedation at once.

If you suffer from health conditions like obesity or sleep apnea, you may be at risk for complications from sedation. During your initial consultation, make sure to inform your dentist of any medical conditions that you have so they can help determine a safe treatment plan for you.

Will I benefit from dental sedation?

Dr. McElroy recommends sedation for patients with dental anxiety and fear so they can receive the necessary care and treatment. You may benefit from sedation dentistry if you:

  • Feel tense, nervous, or anxious before an appointment
  • Become scared at the sight of dental instruments
  • Have trouble breathing or feel panicked in the office
  • Have a low tolerance to pain or resistance to anesthetics
Will I be unconscious during dental sedation?

One of the most common misconceptions about dental sedation is that you’ll be unconscious during treatment, but this isn’t the case. You’ll remain awake and responsive throughout your procedure no matter which sedation option you choose. However, you’ll feel deeply relaxed and likely won’t remember the experience later. 

Can I eat before dental sedation?

In addition to following any pre-op recommendations by our Encinitas dentists, you must follow the fasting guidelines and avoid eating or drinking for six hours before sedation. You may drink water up to two hours before your appointment.

Fasting is an important precaution due to the reflex-suppressing effects of sedation. If you have food or beverages in your stomach and become nauseous, you’re more likely to vomit and aspirate. If you eat or drink before sedation, your procedure will need to be canceled.

If you have any questions about dental sedation instructions, please feel free to contact our Encinitas office by calling 760-230-6638 and we’ll be happy to help.

Get the Dental Care You Need with Sedation Dentistry

At McElroy Smiles By Design, the comfort and care of our patients are our top priority. Our sedation dentistry options can eliminate dental fear, so you can get the dental care you need. When you feel ready for a worry-free dental experience, schedule your appointment with our friendly and experienced sleep dentists in Encinitas, CA. Call 760-230-6638 or click here to request your appointment today!


Our 5-Star-Rated Sedation Dentists in Encinitas, CA, Can Help You with All Your Relaxation & Pain-Free Dental Care Needs Serving Encinitas, Carlsbad, San Marcos, Vista, Oceanside, Solana Beach, Del Mar, Rancho Santa Fe, Escondido & San Diego, CA

Your Top-Rated Dentist in Encinitas, CA

"This is a fantastic Dentist, McElroy and the associates in the office are amazing. Our daughters enjoy every time they are here. Very good practice, highly suggested!!"

- Cody H.

"I would definitely recommend Smiles By Design dental office to anyone who is looking for a personable, honest, thorough, and professional dentist. Dr. McElroy and his staff make you feel so comfortable, you forget you are at the dentist!! Highly recommend!"

- Kelly C.

"Had my first appointment at McElroy smiles by design, and the staff was so friendly and informative. It was an enjoyable experience and I plan on going back in the future."

- Isaac W.

"Thanks to everyone in the office! Great service and very punctual. Dr.McElroy is a wonderful dentist, he is very professional and friendly. He does what it takes to do the job perfectly— even if it requires extra time. I needed a lot of work when I first came to the office, but now when its all done, I love the outcome and my new smile! I am stoked!!"

- Wera S.

*The reviews listed are from actual patients of McElroy Smiles. Individual results may vary. Reviews are not claimed to represent results for everyone.

What To Expect On Your First Visit

Dr. McElroy is excited to provide you a $99 new patient special!


Discuss Your Goals With Dr. McElroy


Thorough Exam & Professional Cleaning


Digital X-Rays


Discuss Your Potential Treatment Options


Bonus: Free copy of Dr. McEroy’s Book