Dental anxiety and fear could be major complications for both patient and dental care provider. In fact, more than half of the people, in general, are afraid of dentists. Children are most often apprehensive about dental treatment. However, keeping oral health in good condition is important, especially at a young age.
A child could be uncooperative or unable to sit still when they’re fearful about a dental procedure. In such cases, your family dentist could recommend using a type of sedation during the treatment. When it comes to dental sedation or anesthesia, there are three options available This could be worrying for the parents, just like kids dentistry in general.
That’s why in this post we’re giving more information about sedation dentistry options that are safe for your child.
There could be a number of reasons why your child may need sedation during a dental procedure. As you know dental treatments are often painful, so sedation would be most appropriate to avoid any discomfort.
Furthermore, if your child is anxious about dental visits, you should make sure the experience is as smooth as possible, otherwise, the problem will worsen. The sedation level required depends on the procedure and the level of anxiety. In some cases of extreme phobia, high levels of sedation could be necessary, while for mild anxiety mild sedation is alright.
It could be difficult to explain to a child why dental care is required. That’s why using the appropriate level of sedation is essential to remain them calm and still for the procedure.
The level of sedation your dentist can choose to use, depending on the procedure that has to be done and of course, the child.
Nitrous oxide is the most common measure. It’s also known as laughing gas and it’s the lowest level of sedation. It’s safe for children when it is kept within the recommended dose and according to the child’s age and weight, so it can be a good solution for the little ones.
Nitrous oxide is non-invasive and it’s blended with oxygen and administered through a breathing mask. Once the child stops breathing it, the drug will quickly leave their system and they’ll return back to normal. Nitrous oxide won’t put your child to sleep, but it will help them to relax.
Mild sedation is induced using orally administered drugs. The child remains awake and is able to respond to verbal communication. However, their coordination and movement might be affected. It doesn’t need any additional monitoring or oxygen as respiratory functions aren’t affected at all.
This way of sedation will make your child drowsy. They will still be able to respond to verbal communication but might be unable to speak coherently. Also, they could remain sleepy after the procedure, and usually they won’t remember anything of the procedure. With moderate sedation breathing and cardiovascular functions aren’t affected as well.
It’s induces using intravenous drugs, which means that a child is fully asleep. They could still more and make some sounds in response to stimulation or pain though. The recovery process is a little slower and your child won’t remember any of what happened.
Deep sedation might weaken the respiratory or cardiovascular function, so an extra qualified person will be there to monitor the child during the procedure.
That’s the deepest option of conscious sedation. It also induces using intravenous drugs. During a general anesthetic, your child will be completely asleep and unable to respond to any stimulation, including pain. They won’t remember anything and should remain drowsy for a long time afterward.
During a general anesthetic, there should always be an anesthetic, specially trained to take care of people under this type of sedation. Also, the patient would need assistance with breathing during the procedure.
Sedation has been a part of dentistry for a long time now. The drugs and methods are constantly reviewed to ensure their safety. During deep sedation and general anesthetic, your child is monitored by a trained professional in the room solely for that purpose. Anyone recommending and administering it should also be certified to carry out conscious sedation pediatric dentistry.
However, sedation can result in some side effects. Such are vomiting, prolonged drowsiness, imbalance or nausea. They usually wear off by themselves, but still after deep sedation or general anesthetic your child should be closely supervised to prevent falling, choking if they vomit, or airway obstruction.
Sedation dentistry recommended to children is a common and safe practice. Keep in mind that the most important thing is not to increase your child’s anxiety, so they can maintain excellent dental care throughout their lives.
If you’re looking for kids dentist in Albuquerque, Dr. Gallegos is certified to give children oral sedation and make their visit as comfortable as possible, so call us and make an appointment. Our team can answer all of your questions so you can put your mind at rest.