Sedation Dentistry for Children
The doctors at Westchester Pediatric Dentistry understand that your child can have anxiety when coming to see them, which can make it hard for your child to relax during a dental procedure. It is our goal to provide your child with a relaxing environment where they can be comfortable and trust coming to the dentist. Our experienced team may recommend a pediatric sedation if your child has anxiety. Since children often do not have the patience for a treatment and are fearful about what is happening to them, soothing words or careful explanations are not always helpful.
Sedation dentistry can be helpful if...
• The child is highly apprehensive about receiving a dental treatment
• Your child has a strong gag reflex
• There have been past difficulty with dental numbing medications, or the child has very sensitive teeth
• The child has behavioral or emotional problems that make dental treatments difficult.
• There are extensive dental needs which need treatment
Our approach to sedation dentistry is conservative, and we only use the minimum method necessary to provide a calming experience for your child. We are professionally trained to identify when your child might require sedation. At Westchester Pediatric Dentistry there is nothing more important than your child’s safety!
Most of the dental procedures your child requires can probably be completed with a local anesthesia; however, very young, fearful, or uncooperative children may require sedation. There are several different sedations that can be used, depending on the procedure, the length of time it will take, and your child’s own unique needs.
Sedation/Anesthesia (Conscious Sedation) Options
1. Local Anesthesia - This is always the simplest option. It involves injecting a numbing medication around the area to be treated.
2. Nitrous Oxide - Also known as “laughing gas,” can be a supplement to a local anesthetic. Since the patient often remembers most of the procedure, it does not work well for children who are dental phobic or cannot sit still through a dental treatment. It is best used to reduce anxiety, as it does not have any sedative or anesthetic effect.
3. Oral Sedation - The child is given syrup to drink or a pill to swallow, and it has a sedative effect to relax patients for the procedure. The medication often takes 30 minutes or more to work, so parents will need to take an active role in administering it to the child.
4. IV Sedation - It is a less common sedation that can be used. Dosage is determined on a patient-by-patient basis and administered through an IV line by a pediatric anesthesiologist.
Drs. Burnett and Sreenivasan are here to discuss your child’s dental needs with you. They can best help you determine which option would be the best for your child. Call our office in Westchester for an appointment. At Westchester Pediatric Dentistry we specialize in treating infants, children, and adolescents with high-quality care in a fun atmosphere!