Are Dental Sedation Methods Safe for Small Children?

Dental sedation is a procedure that involves the administration of sedatives to the patients. It helps reduce fear, anxiety, and pain during the course of the dental treatments. Due to its ability to facilitate, the dentists perform even the complex of operations with ease, its popularity is on the surge. The young and the children can especially benefit from it by using it while going through long and painful treatments.

Dental sedation is normally a safe procedure for people of all ages, whether it be children or the old. This article means to focus particularly on the fact that even small children can undergo dental sedation without any issues. However, there are certain things that the parents must make sure of, before and the after the procedure, to increase the safety level to the optimum. Let us get a peek into the types of dental sedation existing today.

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Types of Dental Sedation

The 3 major types include oral sedation, intravenous sedation, and nitrous oxide.

Oral sedation

As the name suggests, the patients take oral sedation through the medium of either mouth or the nose. It usually takes about 20 minutes to show its effect. Thus, the dentists prefer to give it as soon as possible during the course of the appointment. Oral sedation does not make the patient sleep but calms and relaxes the mind effectively. Hence, the child remains conscious through the sedation.

Intravenous sedation

The dentists prescribe this procedure to send the child to sleep before they begin with the treatment. They inject the medicine into a vein on either the back or the hand of the child. The dentist also inserts a tube down the throat to aid proper breathing. IV Sedation Dentistry just a medication given to the patient to control Anxiety.

Nitrous oxide

This is basically a middle path between the above 2 procedures. The child shall remain awake, albeit a little drowsy by the use of nitrous oxide. It is also known as the laughing gas, which the patients can take in the form of liquid or a pill. Another way is to use a mask, which delivers the child with a mixture of nitrous oxide and oxygen. Once the need for nitrous oxide gets over, the doctors clear it out of the body by using pure oxygen.

All of these procedures aim to provide more comfortability to the child and lessen the anxiousness during the treatments.

how is dental sedation safe for kids?

How is dental sedation safe?

The dentists and the anesthesiologists who carry out the administration of dental sedation undergo 3 years of special training for that. The procedure has always known to be a matter of safety in the medical world. It involves the monitoring of the child’s respiratory rate, blood pressure, heart rate, the level of consciousness and health.

Technology has come quite far. For instance, the EZ IO power driver has the capability to provide doctors with access to the bone marrow of the patients, for the purpose of injecting medicines with ease. Similarly, the procedure of dental sedation has seen a lot of evolvement in the past years. This makes it harmless and all the more safe for the children.

Read on to know what we, as parents, can do to make the procedure even safer for the children.

Before Dental Sedation

The parents can play a vital role in increasing the safety of the dental sedation by keeping in mind certain steps and prepping the child well. Have a word with the dentist to gain more

knowledge about the entire procedure. The most important and the foremost thing to take care of is to ensure that your child goes on for the procedure empty stomach. Dental sedation may cause the sensation of vomiting, posing a risk of the inhalation of the food particles into the lungs.

Besides, it is a must for the parents to reveal the relevant part of the medical history of the child to the dentist. They should also tell them about any medicines or any other treatment the child is going through. Inform them even about the herbal medications your child has been taking, if any.

Loose-fitting clothes help the dentists attach monitors quite easily. Hence, the child should be encouraged to wear baggy clothes before they go ahead with the procedure.

Tips to Make Dental Sedation Safe for Children

During the time at the dental clinic

For all the parents, you must relax your child before the dentist begins with sedation procedure. You can also try bringing along their favourite toys so that they can divert their mind if they feel anxious. Hold their hand whenever they seem to be in discomfort and motivate them. Try talking, singing, smiling and comforting them whenever the need arises.

After Dental Sedation

The child may feel a little dizzy and nauseous after the completion of the procedure. It is the best interest of the child if you take them straight to home and make them rest for the day. Keep checking their breath. Loss of physical coordination and sleepiness are some of the side-effects that may follow the procedure for a while. Hence, take care of the safety of your child and spend time with them.

Prepare easily digestible foods for the child on the day they get dental sedation. In case of bleeding, fever, severe pain, excess breathing problems, and vomiting, immediately contact the dentist for further instructions.

Dental sedation is quite a safe procedure for the children, provided it is dealt with the correct approach and favourable measures. Stay in touch with your dentist before and after the procedure to make it an absolute best experience for your child.

Author Bio:
Ross is a blogger who loves to write especially in the Health vertical. He has written many informative blogs in other verticals too like personal development, unique gifting blogs etc.


  1. These are great tips. I know how stressed I was about getting iv sedation for oral surgery a couple of years ago. I can only imagine how it must be for kids.

  2. This is good info...especially being that we have been at dental appointments lately! I honestly even consider things like this for myself as I have a lot of anxiety about having my teeth worked on but I'm pushing through! :)

    1. I have a ton of anxiety too. I always ask to use the blanket that they use when getting x-rays because it so weighted and helps ease my fears. I am thinking of investing in a travel one to bring with me since they help so much.

  3. I never really thought about this, because when my kids were younger, the option of sedation came up. If they had a cavity, it was shots of Novocain and numbness. I never made a big thing of the dentist or they would have never gone! I did tell them that if they didn’t want to go back the dentist, then they better brush and take care of their teeth. Of course, I would have talked to a their doctor first, because there is always a danger of putting kids under! This is really an important delicate decision!


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