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    5 injection techniques you need to master

    Anesthesia failure is a common problem, but these techniques demonstrate great success.

    As a dental hygiene educator and national speaker on the delivery of local anesthesia, I understand the ways in which our schooling has failed us. We spent countless hours during our semesters of hygiene school intimately studying the anatomical structures of boney and muscular landmarks while understanding the displacement of nerves and blood vessels of the head and neck. This studying was supposed to prepare us to understand anatomical considerations for our patients in the delivery of local anesthesia.

    Injection techniquesAdditionally, dental hygiene school taught us a series of injection techniques that ultimately should serve all of our patients’ anesthesia needs. What I have learned from my time in speaking with experienced clinicians is that they realize the immense challenges noted with the blind delivery of local anesthetic. Generally speaking, providers utilize arbitrary landmarks in identifying a probable location of a nerve that may or may not be present, bifurcated or provide accessory innervation. Additionally, we all realize that not all patients are innervated or structured the same way and these unique considerations provide subsequent challenges in the successful delivery of anesthesia.

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    Anesthesia failure, or the unsuccessful ability to achieve total and profound anesthesia, is a common occurrence in the provision of local anesthesia delivery. The frustrations experienced due to the excessive time, additional techniques and questionable looks from our patients often diminishes our confidence in the delivery of traditional anesthetic techniques.

    Rest assured, as there are several alternative techniques available for the dental provider that utilize minimal anatomical considerations, demonstrate greater success or simply require easier technique modifications.

    This article focuses on the top five alternative injection techniques you need to review and master for your anesthesia delivery.

    Click through the slides to see the techniques.


    Katrina M. Sanders RDH, BSDH, M.Ed, RF
    Katrina M Sanders RDH, BSDH, M.Ed, RF, is a graduate and recipient of countless awards from the University of Minnesota’s School of ...


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