Sedation dentistry is an approach to dental care that uses medications to keep children calm and comfortable during dental treatment. Sedation is ideal when children are nervous about dental procedures or aren’t able to stay still long enough to complete the procedure.
Bellevue Pediatric Dentistry offers both nitrous oxide sedation, oral conscious sedation, and general anesthesia to young patients. Nitrous oxide, or “laughing gas,” is administered to the child through a mask placed over the nose. Oral conscious sedation, on the other hand, is a medication administered orally. General anesthesia makes the child completely unconscious during the procedure and is administered through an IV.
While laughing gas and general anesthesia are administered during the procedure, oral conscious sedation is usually taken before the procedure.
Sedation dentistry is appropriate for any patient who experiences severe dental anxiety. This option is particularly beneficial when children need extensive dental work, such as multiple fillings, root canals, or crowns. In addition, very young children who need invasive dental work may require sedation. If you’re interested in sedation dentistry for your child, Dr. Gerlach can help you decide whether it’s the best choice.
Not all children need sedation during dental work. For children who can complete procedures without sedation, Bellevue Pediatric Dentistry offers other services to keep children calm and comfortable while the Dr. Gerlach works.
All medications have side effects. However, Dr. Gerlach has significant experience with sedation dentistry, and he will monitor your child carefully and continuously throughout the procedure.
Serious complications from sedation dentistry are rare. Dr. Gerlach will explain any possible side effects or risks to you before your child receives sedation.
In addition to sedation dentistry, Bellevue Pediatric Dentistry also offers other services to help children stay calm during dental procedures. We offer overhead movies with Bluetooth headphones to keep your child distracted while we work on their teeth. We also use specialized terminology designed to prevent fear. For example, instead of frightening terms like “medicine,” we say “sleepy juice.” Instead of saying “tooth cleaning,” we say “tickle the teeth.”
Feel free to email us regarding any scheduling or general questions!