What is Anesthesia?
Anesthesia refers to some medication administered to the body to allow for painless medical procedures. An example of its use is during surgery, wherein patients will not feel any pain during the entire procedure.
Anesthesia works by numbing the body of any sensation and temporarily paralyzes muscles to inhibit movement. Oftentimes, patients are induced to sleep during the entire medical procedure to reduce anxiety and so as not to remember anything about the specific procedure. The administration of anesthesia may involve only a certain part of the body only while some forms induce a loss of sensation throughout the whole body.
General Anesthesia refers to total body sedation wherein the patient will go to sleep and is unable to move his/her body. The medicines in this type of anesthesia are typically given intravenously and sometimes may be given along with the oxygen on breathing tubes. This is generally employed during major surgeries to the body which may take long hours for doctors to finish. Regional Anesthesia meanwhile involves numbing of a specific body region and is also employed for surgical reasons. In this setup, patients may be awake but the body area for surgery is numbed. Local anesthesia involves administration of medicine to a small area or body part only. This type of procedure is common in minor surgeries and procedures like dental surgeries and basic wound stitching. Another type of anesthesia is called Monitored Anesthesia Care. This involves sedating patients with enough medicine to make them a little sleepy but still able to comprehend and follow instructions. This technique may also be employed during minor surgeries and may be used along with either local or regional types of anesthesia.
Anesthesia may only be administered by qualified and licensed medical personnel. They may include doctors and/or anesthesiologists, dentists, dental surgeons, or nurse anesthetics.