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Sedation Dentistry

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Sedation Dentistry

Not many children are excited about going to the dentist. However, if your son or daughter gets extremely apprehensive about dental work, getting a regular checkup or simple filling can be an overwhelming experience for you both. On the other hand, enjoyable dental appointments can encourage your child to continue taking care of their oral health for years to come. Read on to find out how our Pediatric Dentist, Dr. Atul Singh (MDS), can help keep your little one safe and calm while caring for their precious smile.

Any dental treatment in which your child takes a sedative medication to help them relax or put them to sleep is sedation dentistry, also known as sleep dentistry for infants. It is a great choice for children with anxiety, with special needs, or who have difficulty staying still for the duration of their procedure.

What Is Sedation Dentistry?

Safe sedation dentistry involves using antianxiety medication to help patients feel as comfortable and relaxed as possible throughout their treatment. Dr. Atul Singh (MDS), at Mint Dental, offers two main options depending on the unique needs of each patient, including:

Nitrous oxide: This is the lightest form of sedation dentistry. It earned its nickname “laughing gas” from the euphoric, happy sensations it fosters in those who breathe it in. Your dentist can adjust how much is administered throughout the treatment to ensure you’re as comfortable as possible the entire time. Nitrous oxide doesn’t put patients to sleep but allows them to feel completely at ease. The lightheaded, somewhat silly feeling will wear off within moments of the mask being removed.

Oral sedation: For a deeper level of relaxation, oral sedation may be preferred. This method utilizes an antianxiety medication that’s taken by mouth. You’ll take it before your appointment and begin to feel calmer before you even arrive at the practice. Since you’ll still be feeling sleepy and carefree for a while after your visit, you’ll need someone to drive you to and from your dentist’s office. During your appointment, you’ll be conscious enough to answer questions and respond to simple requests, but it’s unlikely that you’ll remember much of anything afterward.

General Anesthesia / Hospital Dentistry: We proudly partner with hospitals to provide treatment for those requiring deeper levels of anesthesia. Hospital Dentistry, also called general anesthesia, uses medications to allow the patient to go to sleep while receiving dental treatment. Patients with high levels of anxiety or with special needs may benefit from IV Sedation. General anesthesia can also be a good option for patients with extensive tooth decay, patients who are undergoing surgical dental procedures, or patients with special needs. Dr. Atul Singh will be happy to discuss the risks and benefits of general anesthesia to help you decide if this might be a good choice for your child.

Is Sedation Dentistry Safe for Children?

When using sedation dentistry for children, dental professionals adhere to the recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. These strict guidelines take every precaution to ensure children are as safe as possible when undergoing sedation. A variety of factors are considered when choosing the proper method and dosage of sedation medication, including age, weight, and medical history. While each child needs to be evaluated individually, sedation dentistry is a safe choice for most children who are anxious about receiving dental care.

Which Children Are Good Candidates for Sedation Dentistry?

As long as your child is in good health, they may be a good candidate for sedation dentistry if they:

  • Are extremely fearful about visiting the dentist.
  • Have a strong gag reflex or sensitive teeth.
  • Are undergoing a lot of dental work at once.
  • Can’t sit still for an extended period of time.
  • Have special needs or require extra care.

To find out if sedation dentistry is right for your son or daughter, book an appointment with our Pediatric Dentist at Mint Dental, Dr. Atul Singh (MDS). He will review your little one’s unique smile and circumstances to help you determine which option is right for them.

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