4 Ways to Handle Transportation Before and After Sedation Dentistry.


    Posted by Dr. William Linger, DDS, MAGD

    driver for patients

    If you have a sedation dentistry appointment coming up, transportation is a vital part of your planning process. Most adults are used to simply driving themselves to and from their own doctor's appointments. But even a small amount of sedation will render you unsafe to drive (or operate any large machinery) for the rest of the day, meaning you'll need someone else to drive you home.

    Because this is an unusual logistical challenge to tackle, we're here today to highlight your three best options for getting to and from a sedation dentistry appointment safely.

    Ride Solutions to Avoid

    The first thing we want to cover is what not to do. When it comes to sedation, two of the most common ride solutions no longer become a viable option. First, you almost never want to drive yourself to the appointment. The reason for this is that when you do wind up calling for a ride, you may have to leave your car in the dentist's parking lot until you can arrange to pick it up later. In other words, a total pain.

    The second thing we'd like to warn you about is taking public transportation. Even if you are bus-riding pro, post sedation is not a good time to be surrounded by potentially dangerous strangers. Instead, let us suggest one of the following solutions.

    1) One Car and Waiting

    By far the most common solution for sedation dentistry is simply bringing your designated driver along with you to the appointment. You can even be in the driver's seat on the way to to the dentist's office as long as your companion is ready to drive you home when the appointment is over.

    The only thing about the one-car solution is that your companion will probably spend a good deal of time in the waiting room. Advise them to bring a book or a mobile device that can keep them occupied for more than an hour. It's also a good idea to bring a wall charger for any devices in case the wait is long.

    If you know that the wait will be longer than an hour or two, it may also be possible for your driver to get a few errands done while you're with the dentist. As long as they are back to pick you up in time.

    2) One Car, One Taxi

    Another solution is for either you or your designated driver to take a taxi to the dentist's office. This can allow you to arrive at different times, but with only one car in the parking lot that will be taking you and your companion home.

    The first version of this solution is for you to take a taxi or Uber to the dentist's office and start your appointment without needing someone to wait for you in the waiting room. Then, when you're done, your friend will be called to take you home in their car.

    Alternately, you can drive your car to the appointment. But only if your designated driver is willing to take a taxi or Uber when they come to get you. They will then help you out of the appointment and drive your car home. This is a common solution for people who have to come straight from work and can't leave their car behind.

    3) Home Health Care Service

    We never recommend taking a taxi or Uber home alone after a sedation appointment.  While this is fine for getting you to the office, you will want someone you trust to ensure that you get home safe. Taking a hired car home is fine if you have a companion, but not by yourself.  If there is no one in your social circle available, your dentist should offer a trusted home health care service. They can transport you home and stay there as long as you need after your arrive.  


    The life and schedule of a modern professional is complicated, which is exactly why we have outlined a variety of transportation options. Whether you have someone who is willing and able to wait for you through the appointment or need to do some complex car logistics to get home safely without leaving a car in the lot, we understand and are here to help.

    For more information about the right sedation dentistry options for you and how to safely plan your day around the appointment, contact us today!

    Topics: Sedation Dentistry

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