What Is Sedation Dentistry?
Sedation dentistry refers to the use of anesthesia and sedatives during a wide range of procedures. Dental sedation is used to minimize discomfort and put children at ease, including special needs patients or especially anxious children. Sweetpea Smiles offers relaxing sedation options, including laughing gas, oral sedation, and IV sedation, and we always follow the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry sedation guidelines.
What Is Oral Sedation?
Oral mild/moderate sedation is recommended 1) for very anxious patients 2) to help minimize physical discomfort and pain 3) for young patients requiring extensive dental treatment and/or 4) to control behavior/movement so as to allow the safe completion of the dental procedure.
This treatment involves the administration of a prescription sedative, which is measured out based on the patient’s weight by the pediatric dentists shortly before the visit. Your child’s vital signs will be monitored throughout the treatment. Your child will keep all of their natural reflexes, and they may become drowsy and even take a nap during the procedure, but they will not be unconscious. Even with oral moderate sedation, your child may still fuss during treatment. It is difficult to accurately predict how your child will react to this moderate sedation.
Laughing gas is normally administered in conjunction with oral mild/moderate sedation.
What Is Laughing Gas?
Laughing gas is a sweet-smelling, colorless blend of gases. When inhaled together, they create feelings of happiness and relaxation in most patients. Some even describe feelings of floating or silliness, which is why it is called “laughing gas.” The gas is quickly eliminated when the patient exhales. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recognizes its usage as a safe, effective technique for treating children’s dental needs.
What Is IV Sedation?
Intravenous (IV) sedation is sometimes necessary for children who are very anxious, have a strong gag reflex or are unable to cooperate during dental treatment. A board certified anesthesiologist will provide IV sedation in our office and will monitor your child throughout their dental treatment and during the recovery period of the appointment.