Is Sedation Dentistry Safe for Children?

Young Boy at the Dental ClinicConvincing your nervous child to receive dental treatment can be taxing, and it often leads you to consider sedation. As an anxious parent, you want your child’s dental treatment to be effective and less stressful, but you also want to make sure that sedation does not pose additional risks. Before making any decision, here’s an overview of the benefits and risks of dental sedation.

Understanding the Benefits

A dentist would recommend sedation to enhance the child’s safety and comfort during the procedure. Sedation will help reduce anxiety and increase cooperation among anxious patients. But before the dentist administers the sedative, he or she will first conduct a thorough pre-sedation evaluation.

Your child’s overall health and level of anxiety will be the basis upon which the dentist selects the right sedative. If the dentist does not conduct an assessment, you as a parent have every right to call off the procedure.

Bear in mind that sedation is different from general anaesthesia in that sedation will not make your child unconscious or unresponsive. Its sole purpose is to relax your child so that the dentist can complete the procedure without any interruptions and restrictions. 

Assessing the Risks

By far, the risks involved in oral sedation are minimal if the dentist completes a thorough health evaluation of your child. Sedation dentistry follows a systematic approach, from pre-sedation to post-sedation, to ensure that the medication does not harm your child. If you provide your child’s complete medical history and inform the dentist of any medications your child is taking, there won’t be any complications. 

Upon sedation, your child will feel drowsy and uncoordinated, which could lead to injuries if your child is not assisted properly. You have every right to stay at the practice throughout the procedure to make sure your child stays calm and does not stumble or fall.

Sedation in dentistry has been around for quite a long time, and so far, there is no clear and substantial evidence that it has negative effects on the child’s overall health. Sedation will ease your child’s fear, as well as help the dentist carry out the procedure successfully.

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