Many children have a hard time sitting still, which can make dental care difficult. Others may be fearful or anxious about visiting the dentist. However, with sedation options, we can ensure your child stays comfortable and relaxed during their visit, so every trip to the dentist is a positive experience.
Pediatric sedation dentistry is a branch of pediatric dentistry that focuses on keeping patients calm and relaxed during dental procedures. Some places refer to sedation dentistry as “sleep dentistry.” However, this is somewhat of a misnomer since not all forms of sedation dentistry involve putting patients to sleep. We offer a variety sedation options to help our little patients feel calm and relaxed during dental procedures without necessarily making them fall asleep.
Nitrous oxide, or “laughing gas” was first used in dental sedation way back in 1844. Today, it’s still the most common sedation method for kids.
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Dentists administer nitrous oxide sedation in gaseous form through a mouth or nose piece. Patients inhale the nitrous oxide gas and it displaces the oxygen in the lungs. This form of sedation dentistry often leads to a euphoric and relaxed feeling commonly known as "the giggles".
Dentists administer oral conscious sedation in pill or liquid form. The dentist will ask you to give the medication to your child one or two hours before the procedure. After about an hour or so, they’ll start feeling relaxed and perhaps a little light-headed. The dentist will then proceed with the treatment as planned.
Our dentists may recommend Intravenous, or IV sedation, for complex and lengthy dental procedures, or for children who have difficulty sitting still during their visit. IV sedation is a type of sedation that involves administering sedative medication directly to the patient via an IV drip. This ensures a steady stream of sedation to keep you unconscious throughout the dental procedure.
Hospital sedation provides a safe, anxiety-free option for pediatric dental care. Administered by an anesthesiologist, sedatives allow kids to fully relax through procedures. Vital signs are monitored ensuring optimal levels are maintained. With fewer traumatic memories, hospital sedation can build a lifetime of positive dental experiences for children.
First, our Slidell pediatric dentist must first check your child’s viability for dental sedation before moving forward with treatment. The pre-sedation evaluation involves checking the patients’ medical history, particularly for any neurological conditions and medication that may disrupt the sedation process. If everything checks out, the dentist proceeds to the next step.
The type of sedation administered depends on the dental procedure your child is scheduled for. The treatment will discuss available sedation options with you, so you can pick whichever works best for you. Sedation options range from mild sedation, like laughing gas, to deep sedation, which puts patients to sleep.
After deciding on a form of sedation, the dentist will discuss with you the sedation option, exploring its pros, cons, risks, and potential side effects. This discussion and eventually agreement is known as informed consent.
The dentist will now administer the sedation as described in the treatment plan. For Nitrous Oxide (laughing gas) sedation, the dentist will put a mask over your mouth and nose before turning on the gas supply. The dentist will also administer other types of sedatives as per their standard procedures.
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Yes, dental sedation is perfectly safe for your child. The dentist will recommend sedation that's safe and won’t harm your child. Most dentists prefer laughing gas and oral conscious sedation for pediatric restorative dental procedures or other procedures that require some sort of sedation.
Yes, sedation dentistry is immensely beneficial for patients with dental anxiety. Sedation helps calm the patients’ nerves so they can be comfortable and relaxed throughout the procedure. It also allows the dentist to focus on the treatment without disruptions from nervous or fidgety patients.