The American Academy of Pediatric Dentists openly advocates the use of sedation to promote oral health not only for children who experience anxiety in dental clinics but also for those with special health care needs. The use of sedation in children undergoing dental procedures is safe for as long as a qualified dentist is in charge.
Using sedatives to facilitate performance oral care procedures
There are different methods of promoting relaxation on the dental chair, but the most controversial of all is deep sedation. The drugs put the child in deep sleep, and so it involves a temporary loss of consciousness. Before administering deep sedation or general anesthesia, the dentist determines whether non-pharmacologic approaches are effective in establishing a calm and cooperative atmosphere in the dental clinic. When these approaches are ineffective, only then will they recommend the use of sedatives.
Most of the time, the effect of sedation is limited to making the child feel sleepy and less anxious. This is the purpose of using mild sedative drugs — to keep the child happy and calm while the dentist completes important dental procedures. Children who cannot sit still for long periods can really benefit from sedation dentistry. They will feel no pain, and their body and mind are relaxed throughout the treatment period.
Louisville pediatric dentists, such as Kidz Smile Dentistry, are bound by professional and ethical practice guidelines to explain sedation dentistry to the parents of the children. Parents must provide an accurate medical and dental history so that the dentist will know whether the child does not have any condition that will affect the efficacy of sedation. History taking also reveals contraindications to the procedure. Moreover, parents are educated on the procedures, preparatory activities, as well as the risks involved. They have their own roles to play, including ensuring restriction of food and drink prior to the dental appointment.
Sedation may be the best option for your child. If you have any concerns about the use of sedatives, voice them out and discuss every aspect of the procedure with the dentist.