by Dr Alisha Azam, Dental Aspects, Regents Park, QLD
Ziagel is a topical lignocaine anaesthetic that comes in a gel with a push dispenser. I use it for numbing the gum prior to administering local anaesthetic.
What’s good about it
Ziagel successfully eliminates the prick of the needle and patients really appreciate that. It makes for a much calmer appointment when the patient isn’t stressing about the needle. Ziagel is also effective with people who are gaggers. When I’m about to take an X-ray, I just rub a little gel on their palate and wait a minute. There have been very few occasions when I have been unable to take an X-ray of a gagger after applying Ziagel.
I particularly like using the gel when several patients have been scheduled for several extractions. I just place the Ziagel in a small dish and use a cotton tip to apply as much or as little as I need.
It’s also great with kids, though it can’t be used with children younger than four. If a child needs a filling and they’re a bit stressed, I’ll pop a little Ziagel on their gum and on their hand. Once they feel the spot on their hand go numb, they’re happy for me to go ahead. It also stops them putting their fingers in their mouth to feel their gum.
Ziagel works quickly and has successfully changed the attitude of my patients towards receiving injections. When phobic patients finally visit due to untreated chronic problems, Ziagel goes a long way towards reducing their fear of dentists.
What’s not so good
Ziagel is cherry-flavoured and like most cherry-flavoured medicine, it tastes terrible. The patient definitely needs to rinse after it has been applied. The other downside is that it tends to leave a residue on your mirror. You need to wipe off the mirror a few times during any procedure.