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Is Sedation Dentistry Safe?

Sedation dentistry, one of the options available at South Miami Pediatric Dental Associates in South Miami, FL, can be a good choice for children who are fearful during dental visits or find it difficult to remain still during treatments and exams. Your pediatric dentists, Dr. Mario Martinez and Dr. Danielle Fernandez can help you decide if sedation is right for your child.

What is sedation dentistry?

Sedation dentistry involves using medication to help your child feel calm during a visit to the South Miami dental office. Common types of sedation include:

  • Oral Sedatives: Your child drinks an oral sedative at the office and within 15-20 minutes he/she will start to feel calm and a little sleepy.
  • Inhalation Sedation: Before a dental treatment or an exam begins, the dentist places a small mask over your child's nose. The mask delivers a steady flow of nitrous oxide, commonly called "laughing gas." Although your son or daughter is aware of everything going on around them, he or she will feel much more relaxed than usual.
  • Intravenous (IV) Sedation: During this type of sedation, which is administered by a pediatric anesthesiologist and his team, medication is delivered through an IV line placed in your child's arm. Although your son or daughter will be awake, he or she is unlikely to remember anything about the dental treatment or visit.

In some cases, general anesthesia may be required, this level of sedation is always done in a hospital setting.

Is sedation a safe option for my child?

Sedation dentistry is safe for many children. Before sedation can even be considered, the dentist reviews the child's medical conditions and medications. If there is the potential for an adverse reaction based on this information, sedation dentistry won't be recommended.

Constant monitoring during the exam or treatment is crucial. According to sedation guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, at least two people who are trained to provide advanced life support measures must be present when deep sedation or general anesthesia is used. 

Could sedation dentistry make a trip to the dentist a little easier for your child? Call South Miami, FL, pediatric dentists, Dr. Martinez and Dr. Fernandez of South Miami Pediatric Dental Associates, at (305) 666-2068 to discuss sedation or schedule an appointment.