Pediatric Sedation Dentistry FAQs

Pediatric Sedation Dentistry FAQs

Jan 01, 2023

Like adults, children are prone to oral issues like oral thrush, tooth decay, and gum disease. As a parent, it’s your responsibility to ensure your child has a healthy, functional, and beautiful smile now and in the future. Our mission at Great Neck Dental Associates is to help create the best smile for your child in the long term.

When seeking pediatric care, most children show moderate to severe anxiety or fear during dental appointments. Most dentists use dental sedation to make appointments more comfortable and effective. Like most parents, you may have many questions or concerns about pediatric dental sedation. Below, we answer the most commonly asked questions about sedation dentistry.

    • What is dental sedation?

Sedation dentistry is the practice of using medication to make patients calm and comfortable during dental treatments. While safe and effective, dental sedation isn’t always necessary. It’s commonly used for severe dental anxiety and during lengthy and invasive treatments.

    • Why is dental sedation important?

If a child is very fearful or anxious, they can behave wildly, making it difficult and longer for dentists to provide effective treatment. Similarly, certain treatments can be lengthy and may require multiple treatments. Dental sedation helps keep kids comfortable and relaxed during such treatments.

    • What types of sedation does dentistry use?

There are three types of dental sedation – nitrous oxide, oral sedation, and IV sedation. Nitrous oxide or laughing gas is the mildest form of sedation. It’s administered through a mask, and the effects occur in less than five minutes. The patient will feel calm and relaxed but conscious about their surroundings. The sedation wears off after removing the mask.

Oral sedation is administered through a pill and provides a deeper relaxation than nitrous oxide. Lastly, there is IV sedation. It’s delivered through the vein into the bloodstream. This sedation is deeper and causes a drowsy or sleepy effect. IV sedation is rare in pediatric dentistry. It’s beneficial during lengthy, invasive treatments like root canals and oral surgery.

    • Does my child need sedation dentistry?

While helpful, not all dental patients require sedation. You will need sedation during lengthy, invasive, and invasive dental procedures. Sedation helps minimize discomfort and makes procedures more manageable for patients. It also helps manage strong gag reflux.

    • Which type of sedation is right for my child?

The right type of sedation for your child can vary based on specific treatments, personality, age, length of treatment, medical history, and level of fear. The dentist will discuss the correct type of sedation that’s safe and right for your child.

    • Is dental sedation safe?

Pediatric dental sedation is safe when used correctly and administered by a qualified dentist. Reputable bodies like the American Academy of Pediatric Dentists and the ADA have endorsed pediatric dental sedation as an effective and safe way to keep children calm and comfortable during dental appointments.

    • Why can’t my kid eat before dental sedation?

If your child is expecting sedation, the dentist may advise you to avoid feeding them a few hours before the procedure. Eating right before sedation can cause nausea and increase the risk of aspiration during the treatment.

    • What should my child wear?

Have your child wear loose and comfortable treatments when going for dental appointments. The clothing should be easy to remove or lift if necessary. Tight clothing can make dental appointments more stressful for your child and dentist. Also, have your child brush and bathe before the appointment.

    • Are children monitored?

According to the American Society of Anesthesiologists guidelines, if your child is under sedation during dental appointments, the dentist will monitor their vitals, like blood pressure, pulse, and ECG. In case of anything, emergency equipment and drugs are readily available. Be sure to notify the pediatric dentist if your child has an underlying condition like heart disease, seizure disorder, sleep apnea, asthma, and diabetes.

    • How long do sedatives last?

How long the sedation effects will last primarily depends on the form of sedation administered. Nitrous oxide or laughing gas wears off within 15 minutes of removing the sedation mask. Oral sedation and IV sedation may take a few hours to wear off.

Schedule an appointment today

Do you need more information about sedation dentistry for kids in Great Neck, NY? Contact Great Neck Dental Associates to book your appointments today.

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