If your child has a dental procedure coming up, they may feel anxious and not know what to expect. Our board certified pediatric dentists recommend that you answer any questions your child has about the procedure and reassure them that you can remain in the room with them. If their anxiety remains and you feel it is appropriate, we can arrange sedation for the treatment so your little one will be comfortable and relaxed. There are three types of sedation offered at our Chandler office:
- Nitrous Oxide
- Oral Conscious Sedation
- IV Sedation
Nitrous Oxide is a gaseous mixture administered through a nasal mask. It is the lightest form of sedation we offer and is completely safe for children. It may make your child feel light-headed or like he is “on a space ride.” The gas will not only help him be calm, it will keep him still, which will make the procedure go more quickly. The effects will wear off 2-3 minutes after removing the nasal hood.
Oral Conscious Sedation is offered in the form of an oral suspension, or syrup. This is a light level of sedation that will calm and still your child while allowing her to still respond normally to the dentist’s requests. When the medication clears from her system, she will most likely not remember the procedure.
Intravenous Sedation (IV) is administered when there is an extensive procedure requiring that your child be completely still. Usually this is used for a child who is not old enough to understand and cooperate with the dentist, although it may also be used in cases of extreme anxiety or with an older child who has special needs. We will monitor the child’s heart rate, blood pressure, and oxygen while he is under IV sedation. At the end of the procedure, we will remove the IV and he will wake up. The sedative will completely clear from his system within a couple of hours.
Oral Conscious and IV Sedation do not offer any pain relief, so we may also need to administer a local anesthetic by an injection in the gum or jaw. This will happen after your child is already sedated. Nitrous oxide does offer some pain relief. It can be used at the same time as oral conscious or IV sedation. It may also be used to relax your child before starting an IV for sedation.
As with any procedure, you are welcome and encouraged to be present in the treatment room while your little one is sedated. We know that this will keep her more calm and happy than if you are not there.
Sedation for pediatric dentistry is not only safe, but it is also recommended for younger children when any procedure is indicated. It can mean the difference between fearing the dentist or viewing him as a friend! As part of our services, our more complex sedation cases are administered and monitored through Banner Health Hospital. Call our Chandler office to find out if sedation is an option to help treat your child’s dental needs!
Let’s partner together as parents and board certified pediatric dentists to give your children the best education and chance at a healthy smile for life!