Sedation dentistry involves administering medications to help young patients relax and feel less discomfort while they receive dental work. Parents and dentists work together to choose the right level of sedation for the child.
Options range from local anesthetics to full IV sedation. This blog will explain how each type of anesthesia works and when it might be appropriate.
Why Children May Need Sedation Dentistry
Many children are nervous about dental procedures. Sedation dentistry allows these children to relax during dental work and takes away their fears.
Some children may have difficulty sitting still or following the dentist’s directions. Anesthesia makes them move around less during a procedure, making it safer for the patient and the dentist.
Types of Anesthesia Available for Children
Local anesthesia is given topically or by injection. It helps children experience zero pain during dental procedures.
Nitrous oxide is a safe, easily reversible form of light sedation. The child breathes the nitrous oxide mixed with oxygen through a small mask covering the nose. The anesthesia takes effect within a few minutes.
The child will be relaxed and calm and may feel euphoria from the nitrous oxide. When the procedure ends, the dentist switches the child back to oxygen to help clear the sedative from the body. Within 15 to 20 minutes, the child returns to normal and can carry on with their usual activities.
IV sedation is appropriate for cases where the procedure will take a long time, such as wisdom teeth extraction, or when several dental procedures must occur in one visit.
A qualified anesthesiologist gives IV sedation and monitors the patient’s vital signs throughout the appointment. The patient receives an IV through which sedative medication flows. The patient will sleep during the procedure without memory of what happened.
A more significant recovery time must occur after IV sedation, and the patient should rest quietly for the rest of the day and perhaps the next day, depending on the dental procedure.
When to Ask for Sedation for Your Child
Sedation may be a viable option if your child feels a great deal of anxiety before dental procedures. Sedation can help with the negative anticipation before an appointment and possible behavior problems that may happen during an appointment.
If your child has difficulty sitting still or following directions during a dental visit, they may also be an excellent candidate for sedation.
Call Dental Associates for Kids Only, LLP
Sedation can be a helpful tool for dentists who want their young patients to feel relaxed and comfortable in the office. Sedation dentistry allows even the most anxious children to receive proper dental treatment.
To learn more about our services and schedule an appointment, call our office at 516-625-3806. We can help you understand sedation dentistry for children and how it can help your experience go smoothly.