While most children don't have a need for sedation dentistry, it is the best option for some kids. Depending on the needs of your child and the dental procedure that is being done, your dentist may recommend sedation dentistry for a variety of treatments. After all, being sedated can prevent a painful experience or simply increase the child's comfort during a long appointment. Here are three things you should know about children and sedation dentistry when preparing your child for an appointment.
Know This: You Have Choices
Your dentist will make recommendations based on a variety of factors, including their professional experience, knowledge of your child's dental health, and the general responses to patients to procedures. This knowledge is valuable and should be taken into consideration, but ultimately you have the biggest say in what is right for your child. Also, according to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, you need to inform your dentist about any health conditions your child has, and small periods of fasting may be required before a procedure.
Know This: Understand the Types of Sedation
When it comes to sedation dentistry, there are going to be three major types to consider:
- Oral Sedation – This is a form of conscious sedation where a child is given medicine to calm their fears or anxious feelings.
- Nitrous Oxide – Otherwise known as laughing gas, nitrous oxide provides a type of inhalation sedation that gets rid of pain, while also providing a pleasurable feeling in those who take it.
- Intravenous Sedation – This type of sedation is sometimes referred to as sleep dentistry, and it provides the deepest kind of dental sedation for kids.
Ask your dentist any questions you have about all three types of sedation dentistry for kids before taking your child in for a dental procedure that requires sedation.
Know This: Preparation is Key to a Successful Procedure
It's very important to properly prepare your child for sedation dentistry. They need to know what to expect once they get to the dentist. Get the details from your pediatric dentist prior to the appointment, and go over them with your child more than once. Reassure them that everything is okay. To make sure that your child is emotionally prepared, you may also ask questions about how they are feeling and what they think about the procedure. Ultimately, it's a procedure that will be done to protect their health, so it's a positive thing, and how you talk about sedation dentistry can determine how kids will feel about it.
Finally, when you imagine taking your children in to see the dentist, you probably envision simple check-ups and maybe an occasional cavity. This is usually the case, but sometimes more complicated situations will reveal a need for sedation dentistry. When that happens, there is no need to stress. Nearly any dental procedure can be done safely and professionally under sedation. For more information, contact a dentist who specializes in pediatric dentistry.