Is Sedation Dentistry Safe for Kids?

Is Sedation Dentistry Safe for Kids?

At Centerport Family & Implant Dentistry in Portland, Oregon, Dr. Ben Wang understands the unique concerns and fears that kids have when it comes to getting dental work done. Our team excels in helping our young patients feel more comfortable so that we can set them up for a lifetime of great dental health. As part of these efforts, we offer sedation dentistry.

If you’re worried about the safety of sedation dentistry for your child, read on for peace of mind.

Why the fear?

We mentioned that up to one in five kids and teens experience dental anxiety, but adult numbers aren’t any better. In fact, they’re worse — research has found that between 50-80% of adults in the US have some degree of dental anxiety.

It’s no wonder, then, that kids “inherit” these anxieties as they look to their parents for guidance.

This is not to say that dental anxiety isn’t warranted, and we acknowledge that. Despite the fact that modern dentistry has come a long way in terms of comfort and effectiveness, the noises and proximity of dental work can be alarming. 

We also understand that even though we ensure that your dental procedures are virtually painless through anesthetics, it can be tough to overcome the perceptions, which is where sedation dentistry comes in.

Sedation dentistry and your child

To relieve anxiety in your child, we offer nitrous oxide, which is also known as laughing gas. This approach, which is called conscious sedation, is defined as, “A medically controlled state of depressed consciousness that allows the protective reflexes to be maintained; retains the patient's ability to maintain a patent airway independently and continuously; and permits an appropriate response by the patient to physical stimulation or verbal command.”

Now, let’s break down that jargon. The reason why nitrous oxide is considered safe for children and teens is that we aren’t using general anesthesia, which means your child retains consciousness. This point is important because your child’s airways and reflexes are still maintained. As well, they can respond to verbal commands, which allows us to perform our work more safely and effectively.

Another advantage of nitrous oxide is that it only works as long as we’re delivering the gas. Once we remove the mask, the effects wear off quickly, which we ensure by delivering a quick dose of oxygen to clear their system of nitrous oxide. This means your child should have no lingering side effects other than healthier teeth and gums!

If you’d like to explore whether sedation dentistry is right for your child, schedule a consultation with Dr. Wang. Just call 503-386-5333, or book an appointment online

You Might Also Enjoy...

Understanding the Benefits of Inlays and Onlays

Fillings and crowns aren’t the only way to address gaps in your tooth caused by dental decay and cavities. Learn whether inlays or onlays are best and discover what special benefits they have to offer.

How Long Do Veneers Last?

If you’re interested in getting dental veneers, you might be wondering how long this cosmetic dental option lasts. Learn more about the lifespan of dental veneers, and how you can keep your veneers looking great.

Choosing Invisalign Over Traditional Braces

Braces have been around for a long time, and their ubiquitousness among teens and other young people has been the subject of awkward moments and discomfort. Fortunately, the answer to traditional braces is here.

5 Brushing Habits You Should Adopt

Your oral health is more important than you probably realize. If you don't take care of your teeth you run the risk of serious health problems that could impact your entire body. Keep reading to learn what brushing habits you should about to keep yourself.

It’s Not Just Snoring: The Dangers of Sleep Apnea

Do you snore? Have you discussed it with your dentist? If your answers are yes and no, respectively, know this: Snoring is one of the earliest symptoms of sleep apnea, a potentially life-threatening condition, but one that’s often easily treated.