Children who are very young, have a high level of anxiety, or have had traumatic experiences can benefit a lot from sedation. Sedating children that may not be able to cooperate will provide a safe and effective way to deliver dental treatment in a relaxed environment.
Nitrous oxide (happy gas):
It is available in our office and helps to relieve mild levels of anxiety in children. It is appropriate for children who are a little nervous or who have a small amount of dental work to be done.
It is also very helpful for children who have a gag reflex. It makes routine check-ups or simple treatments much easier and more comfortable to handle.
We always ask to make sure your child comes in with at least 2 hours of no food or drinks. It is simply breathed in through a nose piece and can have different fun smells like Strawberry, Cotton Candy, Grape, or etc. It is an incredibly safe and effective way to help a child relax during a procedure. After the procedure, your child will breathe in pure oxygen for at least 5 mins to wash away the nitrous gas; that way, they are back to their normal state when they are ready to leave the office.
Conscious sedation (happy Juice):
It is an option for children who have more anxiety or have a more difficult or time-consuming procedure.
Your child is not to eat or drink after midnight on the night of treatment. On the day of sedation, the medication is given orally. It will be administered inside the office and will take about 20 minutes to kick in. That’s when the child is taken to the treatment room. The child’s blood pressure, oxygen level, and heart rate are monitored throughout the procedure although the mild medications used in the office are not expected to affect these measurements. Oral sedation is a very effective way to help young or nervous children through what could otherwise be a difficult dental experience for them.
The sedation effects last sometimes up to 8 hours. Although your child stays with us for recovery until they are close to their pre-medication stages, for the safety of your child, we always ask parents to make sure the child takes the entire day off and stays home under adult supervision. They are good to go back to their normal activities the following day.
General anesthesia (happy sleep):
It is sometimes necessary for children that have a large amount of dental work to use the benefits of general anesthesia. It can be due to age, maturity level, and medical or behavioral conditions.
The child is completely asleep for the entire procedure. Our doctors have hospital privileges and these procedures are completed in the hospital setting for the patient’s safety. All of our general anesthesia cases are performed in an operating room with an anesthesiologist and a team of nurses to care for the sleeping child while one of our dentists completes the dental treatment. Again, your child will need to take the entire day off. They will stay at the hospital under the care of nurses and doctors during recovery.
You may be able to use your medical insurance to cover hospital costs. We will go over all of that with you in detail beforehand.
If you have questions or concerns about sedation techniques, please contact our office.