Dental treatment can be a traumatic experience for some children. Sedation or general anesthesia is usually recommended to make delivery of the required treatment possible in a safe and comfortable manor. We will explain all treatment options as well as their benefits and risks.
Both the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the American Dental Association approve of appropriate sedation. To minimize the risks of the process, make sure to inform the staff about your child’s medications. The staff will discuss the entire sedation process with you and be happy to answer your questions.
Dr. Kennedy administers several different types of sedation, including nitrous oxide, oral sedatives and general anesthetic. Sedatives and anesthetics are administered per the protocols recommended by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentist.
Some children are given nitrous oxide, or what you may know as laughing gas, to relax them for their dental treatment. Nitrous oxide is a blend of two gases, oxygen and nitrous oxide. Nitrous oxide is given through a small breathing mask which is placed over the child’s nose, allowing them to relax, but without putting them to sleep.
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, recognizes this technique as a very safe, effective technique for treating your child’s needs. The gas is mild, easily taken, then with normal breathing, it is quickly eliminated from the body. It is non-addictive. While breathing nitrous oxide your child remains fully conscious and keeps all their natural reflexes.
Oral sedation is recommended for apprehensive children, and very young children. It is used to calm your child and to reduce the anxiety or discomfort associated with dental treatments. Your child may be quite drowsy, and may even fall asleep, but they will not be unconscious.
IV sedation is another alternative for the apprehensive child. A board-certified M.D. Anesthesiologist provides IV sedation in our office and monitors your child throughout the procedure and during recovery. The anesthesiologist will talk with you prior to the visit to provide instructions and answer any questions that you may have.
General anesthesia puts a patient in a state of deep sleep. Children rarely need general anesthesia. However, Dr. Kennedy’s relationship with the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center enables him to use general anesthesia when appropriate. Should your child suffer dental trauma due to an accident, or have special needs that cannot be suitably addressed in the office, Dr. Kennedy can avail himself of the hospital facilities to care for your child.
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