While we make every effort to keep your child feeling calm and comfortable, we understand that kids often have short attention spans and can get fussy. This is why we offer several completely safe sedation options.
None of our preferred methods put your child to sleep; they simply help calm them so they can be treated while in a more relaxed state. This ensures a better, more efficient visit for you, your child, and our staff. We will make recommendations on the best type of sedation for your child based on their specific needs.
Nitrous Oxide ("Laughing Gas")
Nitrous oxide, more commonly known as laughing gas, is often used as a conscious sedative during a dental visit. The gas is administered with a mixture of oxygen and has a calming effect that helps phobic or anxious patients relax during their dental treatment. Because it is a mild sedative, patients are still conscious and can talk to their pediatric dentist during their visit. After treatment, the nitrous is turned off and oxygen is administered for 5 to 10 minutes to help flush any remaining gas. The effects wear off almost immediately. Nitrous oxide rarely has side effects, although some patients may experience minor nausea and constipation.
Oral conscious sedation is most commonly used during extensive procedures, such as fillings, crowns, bridges, root canals, extractions, cosmetic procedures and periodontal treatments. Patients with dental phobia, patients who find it difficult to sit still or special needs patients can benefit greatly from conscious sedation.
Sedation is endorsed by the American Dental Association and is an effective way to make many patients comfortable during their dental visit. We follow sedation guidelines set by the American Society of Anesthesiologists and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry.
I.V. Sedation is recommended for apprehensive children, very young children, and children with special needs that would not work well under conscious sedation. The dentist performs the dental treatment in our office with the child anesthetized under I.V. sedation, which is administered and monitored by an anesthesiologist.
General anesthesia provides a way of effectively completing dental care while a child is unconscious. It is administered under the care of a licensed Dentist Anesthesiologist here in our office.