Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Lightheadedness At The Dentist Could Prove Serious

Date:
November 25, 2008
Source:
Academy of General Dentistry
Summary:
Breath-holding spells, also known as vasovagal syncope, are characterized by a loss of consciousness and muscle tone, which typically are preceded by non-specific symptoms that last anywhere from a few seconds to a minute. These symptoms result from alterations in the nervous system that can include dizziness, lightheadedness, paleness, palpitations, nausea, sweating, hyperventilation and changes in vision.

You see it in movies or while viewing your favorite sitcom; a scene at the doctor's office where the character inevitably gets a little woozy which leads to a fainting spell. It may seem funny when watching it all unfold on television, but according to a study in the May/June 2008 issue of General Dentistry, the Academy of General Dentistry's (AGD) clinical, peer-reviewed journal, this type of reaction, in real life settings, these breath-holding scenarios are the most common emergency situation in the dental office.

Related Articles


This condition is known as vasovagal syncope and lead author of the study, Rubia Kapusta, DDS, MS, explains that both dentists and patients should be aware of the signs and be prepared in case it occurs. Vasovagal syncope is characterized by a loss of consciousness and muscle tone, which typically are preceded by non-specific symptoms that last anywhere from a few seconds to a minute. These symptoms result from alterations in the nervous system that can include dizziness, lightheadedness, paleness, palpitations, nausea, sweating, hyperventilation and changes in vision.

According to Dr. Kapusta, "Any patient who experiences a syncope reaction may have an underlying cause that can predispose him or her to a life-threatening situation."

It is considered the most common clinical problem that occurs among patients of all ages, affecting 3.5 percent of the general population. Emotional stress, anxiety, pain, fatigue and being in a hot and crowded environment can lead to vasovagal syncope.

"It is not uncommon for patients to experience some anxiety when visiting their general dentist," says AGD spokesperson, Melvin Pierson, DDS. "Yet, there are ways to lessen the possibility of an anxiety-related incident." Dr. Pierson encourages patients to discuss with their general dentist any fears they may have, and when seeing a dentist for the first time, schedule a preliminary visit.

"Asking questions and requesting informational materials can help you get a better understanding of your dental service or treatment," says Dr. Pierson. "General dentists are trained to answer questions and tell you what to expect to help you feel comfortable."

If the signs and symptoms of vasovagal syncope do occur, the dental procedure will be immediately stopped and treatment provided as soon as possible.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Academy of General Dentistry. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Academy of General Dentistry. "Lightheadedness At The Dentist Could Prove Serious." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 November 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081125181043.htm>.
Academy of General Dentistry. (2008, November 25). Lightheadedness At The Dentist Could Prove Serious. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 5, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081125181043.htm
Academy of General Dentistry. "Lightheadedness At The Dentist Could Prove Serious." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081125181043.htm (accessed March 5, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Bupa Eyes India Healthcare Opportunities

Bupa Eyes India Healthcare Opportunities

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 5, 2015) Bupa is hoping to expand in India&apos;s fast-growing health insurance market, once a rule change on foreign investment is implemented. The British private healthcare group&apos;s CEO tells Grace Pascoe why it&apos;s so keen on the new opportunity. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor in Your Pocket Is Getting Smarter

Doctor in Your Pocket Is Getting Smarter

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 5, 2015) Mobile apps are turning smartphones into a personal doctors, with users able to measure heart rate, blood pressure and even blood sugar. But will it change our behaviour? Ivor Bennett reports from the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
AbbVie Inks $21B Deal To Buy Cancer Drugmaker Pharmacyclics

AbbVie Inks $21B Deal To Buy Cancer Drugmaker Pharmacyclics

Newsy (Mar. 5, 2015) AbbVie announced Wednesday it will buy cancer drugmaker Pharmacyclics in a $21 billion deal. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Toddlers Drinking Coffee? Why You Shouldn't Share Your Joe

Toddlers Drinking Coffee? Why You Shouldn't Share Your Joe

Newsy (Mar. 5, 2015) A survey of Boston mothers and toddlers found that 15 percent of two-year-olds drink coffee and 2.5 percent of 1-year-olds. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins