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PIMA PEDIATRIC DENTISTRY
What to Expect Before and After Oral Conscious Sedation
We always try to provide the highest quality dental care and a positive dental experience for your child. In certain cases oral conscious sedation (minimal or moderate sedation) is recommended in order to help accomplish these goals. The use of sedation oftentimes allows the dental visit to be easier, more comfortable and a more positive experience for your child. To help insure a successful sedation visit, your understanding and cooperation with the following is required. 1.
FOOD - If your child is 6 years of age or younger, s/he may not have anything to eat within 6 hours
prior to the scheduled dental appointment. If your child is 7 years old or older, s/he may not have anything to eat within 8 hours prior to the scheduled dental appointment. 2.
DRINK - Your child may have a small amount of clear liquids (one or two sips) up to 3 hours prior to the
scheduled dental appointment. Clear liquids are fluids that you can see through. Breast or cows milk are not
CHILDHOOD MEDICATIONS - If your child takes a daily medication that is prescribed by a physician,
please inform us as to the name of the medication and the reason your child takes it. In many instances we will want your child to take the medication the morning of the sedation appointment with the one or two sips of clear liquid. 4.
CHILDREN WITH ASTHMA - If your child has asthma and uses an inhaler – please bring the inhaler
with you to the appointment. If your child has a breathing treatment every morning, please give them the breathing treatment prior to the scheduled dental appointment. If your child is experiencing an asthmatic event the morning of the appointment, or has had an asthmatic event up to 2 weeks prior to the scheduled dental visit, please call us, generally we will need to reschedule the appointment for a time when your child’s asthma is stable. 5.
The medications we use for oral sedation vary but in general consist of Chloral Hydrate (Noctec),
Hydroxyzine Hydrochloride (Atarax), or Midazolam (Versed). The particular combination and dosage of drug selected is individually tailored to your child. We administer the medications from our office. 6.
After the sedative medications have been given and they begin to take effect (approximately 15-20
minutes for Midazolam; 30-45 minutes for Chloral Hydrate) your child may laugh or cry, may be subdued or hyperactive. They may or may not be sleepy or fall asleep. These are all normal reactions to the medications. After the medications have achieved their desired effect, your child will be brought back to the treatment room without you. The treatment rooms are not designed to have parents present. If appropriate, he/she will be placed in protective stabilization wrap (also known as a papoose board). Nitrous oxide (laughing gas) may be administered to aid in treatment. A pulse oximeter and other monitors may be placed to aid in monitoring your child. Supplemental oxygen is usually given to maintain a proper level of oxygen saturation. 7.
After the planned treatment for the day has been completed (in about 30 minutes - 1 hour), your child
will be monitored until a satisfactory level of recovery has been achieved. At that point they will be released to
you. Your child may sleep for several hours after the appointment. Please monitor your child’s breathing while
they sleep and have your child sleep on their back or side. DO NOT LET THEM SLEEP ON THEIR
. When they awaken or when they arrive at home they may be very hungry. Start by giving your
child small sips of clear liquids. Once your child is tolerating clear liquids you can slowly move to more
substantial foods such as applesauce or soup. Avoid milk and egg products for the first 3-5 hours after the
appointment as they may cause nausea and vomiting. Do not let your child overeat or they may vomit. Make sure
they drink plenty of fluids. Fluids are more important than food at this time.
Those parts of the mouth that received treatment may have been given local anesthetic (e.g. lidocaine)
and your child’s lips, cheek, and/or tongue will be numb (“asleep”). Children often find this numb feeling uncomfortable and may believe that their lips, cheek, and/or tongue are “fat” or missing. If you notice your child acting as though they are chewing gum, most likely they are chewing on their lips, cheek, or tongue. While not painful at the moment, when the anesthetic wears off, they may have substantial pain in the chewed areas. Please monitor your child so that they do not bite themselves or rub the numb area raw. 9.
If your child is crying after sedation, generally it is not due to pain, but is a normal post-sedation
Bleeding is often noticed after treatment has been completed and is a normal post-operative finding
especially if any of your child’s teeth were removed during the day’s treatment. One drop of blood in a mouthful of saliva looks terrible, but rarely is concerning. 11.
Do not plan activities for your child on the day of his/her sedation dental treatment as the sedative
medications take several hours to dissipate. Allow your child to rest after his/her dental visit and plan on a quiet and relaxed day. Adult supervision for 4-6 hours after the appointment is required. 12.
Please notify us prior to the scheduled appointment if there has been any change in your child’s medical
history, medications or reactions to medications. Please also let us know if your child has been sick (ex. cold).
On the day of the appointment, please dress your child in loose fitting comfortable clothing and please do not
place your child’s hair in a pony or pigtail as either may be uncomfortable as they lie in the dental chair. 13.
The time scheduled for your child’s dental sedation appointment is reserved specially for your
child. Should you need to reschedule the scheduled appointment for any reason, we request that you give
us a minimum 48 hour notice in order to avoid a $50.00 cancellation fee.
Call us at 744-2663 if you have any questions.
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