What Is Sedation Dentistry?

Sedation dentistry is a branch of dentistry that focuses on using medication called sedatives to keep patients relaxed and calm during dental procedures. It’s extremely beneficial for children with dental anxiety or special health care needs. Sedation can vary from mild sedation for minimally invasive treatments to general anesthesia for more complex and invasive procedures.

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Did you know…

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sedation dentistry has helped many children overcome their fear and anxiety of the dentist.


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What to Expect During Sedation Dentistry?

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Sedation Administration

If your child is fit for sedation, the next step involves administering it. Sedation varies from mild to deep sedation. Dr. Michelle will determine what type of sedation suits your child best based on factors like the type of treatment being performed, their medical history, and anxiety levels. All sedation methods are safe and effective.

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Pain Management

Pain management involves administering a local anesthetic to numb pain during surgery. We inject lidocaine into the affected region to disrupt nerve activity. This ensures patients have a painless experience throughout the entire procedure.

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Most patients’ sense of time changes when under sedation. This is perfectly normal. Sedation takes time to wear off, and patients might feel groggy and light-headed. However, this light-headedness only lasts a short while. Meanwhile, patients should focus on resting and recovering.

What Types of Sedation Are Used in Dentistry?

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Nitrous Oxide (Laughing Gas)

Nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, is a gaseous sedative that dentists administer through a mask or nosepiece. Laughing gas is an extremely safe way to help your child relax during their visit. Laughing gas can also make patients feel tingly and euphoric. Nitrous oxide is fast-acting and works in two to three minutes, and it also leaves the body just as fast.

Oral Sedation

Oral sedation, as the name implies, is sedation that is administered orally. It's most often taken in the form of a pill, but sometimes patients take it as syrup. Oral sedation takes longer to kick in and the effects last for several hours. Patients may feel groggy and light-headed after oral sedation.

Intravenous (IV) Sedation

Intravenous sedation (IV) sedation involves administering sedation directly to the bloodstream via an IV drip. This is a form of deep sedation for complex and lengthy procedures like jaw surgery. It takes effect in three to five minutes but can take up to 24 hours to wear off.

FAQs About Sedation Dentistry

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How Safe Is Dental Sedation for Children?

Sedation dentistry is completely safe for children of all ages. It’s extremely useful for calming dental anxiety in kids with dentophobia. The dentist will prescribe an appropriate dosage for your child depending on their procedure and other factors.

Did you know…

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Pacifiers and thumb-sucking habits can negatively impact the development of a child's teeth and bite?

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