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How Are Dental Sedation Levels Chosen for Children?

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For some children, a short trip to the dentist can be a dreadful experience. Fear, anxiety, or any other adverse reaction during a routine cleaning can make parents feel like it’s not even worth the effort. At Cuddly Smiles Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics, Dr. Yvonne Felli works with families throughout Allen, TX by providing highly tailored pediatric dental care to help meet the unique needs and concerns of each patient. With the right dental sedation, children can feel at ease in our office and receive restorative and preventive dental care to mitigate oral health issues. 

What is sedation dentistry? 

Sedation dentistry involves utilizing any form of medicine to relax a patient prior to receiving a dental exam, cleaning, or intervention. For children, dental visits may trigger challenging behaviors that make treatment efforts impossible or create poor associations for future visits. At Cuddly Smiles Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics, our team offers a variety of sedation methods to help make your child’s visit easier and more pleasant. 

Why may a child need sedation during a dental visit? 

There are a few reasons why a child may be recommended for sedation dentistry, including:  

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Heightened anxiety  

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Dentist-related phobias or Needle phobia

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Low pain tolerance  

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Intensive oral treatments or surgeries that may cause pain or discomfort  

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Behavioral, developmental, or psychiatric disorders that may complicate their visit  

Benefits of sedation dentistry 

Sedation dentistry for children can provide numerous benefits for the entire family, including:  

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Less stress and anxiety during dental office visits  

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Reduced discomfort or pain  

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Higher-quality exams and treatments  

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Improved relationships with dentists and technicians 


Reduce Number of dental visits

Types of available dental sedation 

At Cuddly Smiles Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics, our team offers the following forms of dental sedation:  

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N20 sedation: Also referred to as laughing gas, this is given via a nose covering and mildly relaxes the patient  

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Oral sedation:  A medication or a combination of medications is provided  few minutes prior to treatment to induce conscious sedation. This medication provides a state of relaxation, calmness and reduce anxiety to allow for a safe dental treatment.

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In-office General Anesthesia or intravenous (IV) sedation:   A state of unconsciousness produced by an anesthesiologist.  The anesthesiologist keeps the patient asleep during treatment by using anesthesia gases and medication. The patient is awaken after treatment completion. The patient is unconscious and does not experience any pain.

Dental sedation is often paired with local anesthesia, which numbs the gums and teeth to prevent unnecessary pain or discomfort. 

How are dental sedation levels chosen for children?  

Before administering specific dental sedation and dosage, our team helps determine which form to use by considering the following:  

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The child’s dental and medical history  

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The child’s age and height  

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The type of dental treatment they will be receiving  and amount of work needed

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The child’s preferences, concerns, or fears  

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The parent or caregiver’s recommendations  

Are there any side effects from dental sedation to be aware of? 

Common side effects from dental sedation may include:  

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Drowsiness  

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Minimal to no memory of the dental procedure  

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Fogginess  

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Headaches  

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Dry mouth  

In most cases, dental sedation causes minimal side effects that resolve within a day or so. If parents notice anything out of the ordinary or prolonged symptoms, contact our office right away. 

How to help a child care for their oral health at home 

Parents can help their children decrease their risk for decay and cavities, thus reducing their need for additional dental visits. Consider applying the following tips to optimize your child’s oral health:  

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Brush and floss the teeth twice daily  

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Use mouth rinse when age-appropriate  

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Encourage eating nutritious foods and reducing sugar intake  

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Remind your child to wear a mouthguard during contact sports  

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Attend routine dental exams and cleanings  

Learn more about dental sedation for children in Allen, TX 

If you reside in or near Allen, TX, and wish to learn more about dental sedation for children, contact our team at Cuddly Smiles Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics today. Dr. Yvonne Felli will work with you and your family to determine if dental sedation is appropriate for your child and carefully select the most effective level to make their appointments as comfortable as possible.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.

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