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Sedation

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At Affiliated Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics (we go by APDO for short), we strive to provide the highest quality dental and orthodontic care while making our patients as comfortable as possible. Our doctors and highly trained team of pediatric dental specialists have years of experience working with children, and we know how to make a trip to the dentist's office a great time for everyone. But while we love our patients and they love us, we recognize that sometimes, the sound of a dental drill can be scary – which is why we're happy to offer sedation dentistry services to those patients who need it.

Benefits of Sedation Dentistry

Sedation dentistry is the practice of using sedatives during dental treatment in order to help the patient relax, ease anxiety, and keep calm during their treatment. We offer a variety of different types of sedatives, ranging from simple nitrous oxide (commonly called "laughing gas") to general anesthetics that put patients fully to sleep. We'll evaluate your child individually to determine what the best course of sedatives is for a safe, effective treatment. 

We understand that some parents are skittish about the use of drugs during treatment, but there's no need to worry - both the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the American Dental Association endorse sedation as a safe, effective option for enhancing patient comfort and experience. If you do choose to sedate your child, please let us know if they have any allergies and inform us of any medications or medical treatments they're receiving.

Why Use Sedatives?

The beauty of a sedated dental experience is that often, the patient feels like it only lasts for a few minutes. While we at APDO are experts in working with children, for some, the experience of a dental treatment is simply too much to handle. Sedatives offer an easy, safe, and effective way to get the treatment done safely and correctly without any anxiety for the patient.

Types of Sedatives

  • Nitrous Oxide (Laughing Gas)
    Nitrous oxide is a mild sedative delivered as a gas through an oxygen mask. Patients usually remain awake for treatment and can talk to their dentist throughout the process. It's also called laughing gas for a reason - you may notice your child get giggly or start telling stories, and occasionally fall asleep. Once we complete the treatment, we'll turn the gas off, and the effects will wear off almost immediately. Side effects are very rare, but some patients may feel nauseous or have constipation.

  • Oral Sedation
    This is another easy technique where your child will drink their prescribed medication. We offer a variety of oral sedatives, and we'll select the best one for your child based on their overall health, the severity of their anxiety, and how large of a dental procedure they need. Medications administered orally can take up to an hour take effect and are usually mild - your child will probably relax and get a bit drowsy, potentially falling into a light sleep that they can be easily roused from. Oral sedation is not intended to make them unconscious or unresponsive. Very rarely, children may have an opposite reaction like crying or agitation.

  • IV Sedation
    This procedure will draw your child into a deep sleep. It's often the easiest on the child, and is safe and effective when administered by one of our highly trained, highly accredited professional dental anesthesiologists. The anesthesiologist will give your child and injection of ketamine, which will relax them within 10 minutes. Children often forget the injection due to ketamine's amnesic properties. We'll then place in an IV to continue the sedative effects for the rest of treatment. Once we're finished, we'll reverse the anesthetics and your child will begin to wake up. We'll provide you with detailed post-operative instructions, and once your child is alert enough, you'll be free to go home.

Contact Your Scottsdale, AZ Pediatric Sedation Dentists

Have more questions about sedation dentistry or any other services we offer? We're happy to answer them. Feel free to reach out to us at our contact page or use our easy online form to schedule an appointment at either of our Scottsdale, AZ locations. We can't wait to hear from you!