Sedation dentistry is used during dental treatments to help patients, especially children, manage their anxiety.

Different dental procedures may require children to stay still and, if they have a sensitive gag reflex or are easily scared by dental equipment, keeping them in the dental chair can prove challenging.

In this article, our oral care experts at Impressions Dentistry in Gilroy, California, explain how sedation dentistry can help children relax during dental procedures.

Sedation and Pediatric Dentistry

In pediatric dentistry, children are administered sedative medication to help them relax. Sedatives are usually recommended by the dentist when your child has to undergo lengthy or multiple procedures in one sitting.

Sedation is completely painless and safe for your child.

Types of Sedation and Their Effects on Children

The different types of sedation commonly used during dental procedures performed on children are:

  • Nitrous Oxide

Also known as laughing gas, nitrous oxide is a mild and non-invasive sedation technique usually administered through a ‘space mask’ that provides a flow of air mixed with oxygen and the medication.

After the procedure, the child will be given to breathe in pure oxygen to eliminate any remaining gas.

  • Mild Sedation

The sedatives used for mild sedation keep your child calm and awake throughout the dental procedure. He/she will also be able to respond to the dentist’s instructions but will not be able to remember the procedure once the sedative wears off.

  • Moderate Sedation

Often used on older children and adults, moderate sedation makes children sleepy but still able to respond to the commands of the dentist. Your child will not require any assistance with breathing or waking up from under this sedation. However, it may not be suitable for younger children.

  • Deep Sedation

Intravenous (IV) medications are given to relax your child and there will be an anesthesiologist present to monitor your child’s heart rate, heart rhythm, blood pressure, and oxygen levels throughout the procedure.

  • General Anesthesia

Your child will be completely unconscious under general anesthesia and the procedure will be painless for him/her. The medication will be administered by specially trained staff while the dentist or the oral surgeon performs the procedures.

To learn more about how sedation dentistry helps children relax during dental procedures, call (669) 327-5623 or visit Impressions Dentistry at 1325 1st Street, Gilroy, CA 95020.

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