How Safe Is Pediatric Dental Sedation?

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Sedation drug therapy has come a long way, enabling pediatric dentists to provide dental treatment to children who get frightened by the thought of sitting in a dentist’s chair. Invasive treatments like filling of cavities, root canals and tooth extraction have become possible because of conscious sedation techniques.

But when it comes to dental sedation, safety is the top concern of parents.

Safe Dental Sedation Techniques for Children

It is important to bear in mind that sedation is not a risk-free technique. One way to induce minimal, moderate and deep sedation is through conscious sedation. However, minimal sedation is the safest way. In order to help the child overcome the fear of dental procedures, minimal conscious sedation is provided. This is the best way to tackle with anxiety and fear.

The child can still breathe on his/her own as well as respond to physical pre-emptive stimuli and verbal commands. Minimal and moderate sedation is provided orally, while deep sedation is injected intravenously. A combination of laughing gas (nitrous oxide) and oxygen is provided to the child through a mask as an inhalant. Oral conscious sedation drugs that are used commonly today are Midazolam and Hydroxyzine. Both of these drugs are quite safe. These drugs are expelled out of the body faster than other drugs.

A trained and accredited dentist can perform all three of these techniques. Do not be afraid to ask questions about the certifications, trainings and experience in giving sedation drugs or anesthesia to children.

Using Immobilizing and Precise Positioning Equipment

The equipment used by the dentist needs to be of topnotch quality, with precise positioning systems. They should be immobilizing so that the movement inside the child’s mouth is as little as possible. This ensures that the process will be harmless, injuries won’t be caused by dental instruments, and the airways are not blocked.

Monitor the Child for Safe Procedures

When the child has been administered sedation, constant monitoring is required for vital signs. Following safety checks ought to be monitored:

  1. Respiration rate
  2. Blood pressure
  3. Heart rate
  4. Oxygen level in blood
  5. Temperature
  6. Amount of air entering and leaving the lungs

A designated member should be aware of the child’s conditions at all times and should be ready to inform in case things go awry.

What Happens When the Child Regains Consciousness After Sedation?

The child gets dizzy and nauseated when the effects of sedation begin to wear out. Parents or guardians are supposed to be in the vicinity. At least two adults should accompany the patient – one to monitor the child for breathing patterns and one to driving back home. Severe bleeding, pain, fever and vomiting should not be experienced but if this happens the pediatric orthodontist should immediately be contacted.

If your child suffers from dental problems but is unable to overcome their fear of dental procedures, you may bring them to Brenham Family Dental. Your child will be cared for with the best in the business.

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