Being patient and spending the time to tell, show and properly explain to your child what is going to be done is generally the best way to alleviate any anxiety that they may have.
At First Smile Pediatric Dentistry we will spend the time needed to make sure your child feels at ease. However, even with best care and patience, whether or it be due to their age or previous dental experience, some kids need to be sedated in order to facilitate their treatment in a positive manner. In order to help your child, we offer:
Nitrous Oxide Sedation (laughing gas)
Your child wears a soft rubber nose from which he will breath in nitrous oxide. Nitrous oxide is an extremely safe form of inhalation sedation. Your child will be conscious and awake during treatment. However, the laughing gas will help them relax and make them less aware of the dental treatment. Nitrous oxide can help children with severe gag reflexes and also enhances the numbing effect. The effects of the nitrous oxide generally wear off within 5-10 minutes after the treatment is complete. Nitrous oxide is one of the safest and mildest sedative being used for dental treatment. It is best that your child does not eat a large meal an hour prior to their appointment as the laughing gas can make them feel noxious. For more information regarding Nitrous Oxide [hyperlink] please click on the link or visit our common questions under Pediatric Dentistry. Nitrous oxide is best for children who are slightly anxious and need a little help to feel comfortable and sit still.The child stays awake and is able to respond to questions and directions.
Oral Sedation (happy juice)
A liquid oral sedative will be given to your child in the office based on their weight. The sedative given will vary based on the treatment needed and the anticipated time needed to complete the appointment. Dr. Marfatia will discuss the appropriate medication, potential side effects and post operative care. The sedation generally takes about 15 minutes to take effect after which time your child will be brought in to the treatment room to start treatment. The nitrous oxide mask will also be placed on your child to aid in their sedation. During treatment we will closely monitor your child’s vital signs. Most kids, while drowsy and not 100% coherent, will be awake for the treatment. With the oral sedation, your child must be on an empty stomach (no food or liquid) for 4 hours prior to the appointment. If your child is not on an empty stomach they will not be given the oral sedation. Oral Sedation is best suited for kids who feel anxious, scared, or cannot cooperate with instructions. Most kids do not fall asleep with oral sedation. With the sedation, you can expect your child will be groggy for 2-4 hours after the appointment. It is best they watch a movie or play on the ground while being monitored. They will have to remain from outdoor activities. Please download our pre-op and post-op care instructions.
Some children need to be asleep to safely complete their treatment in a non-traumatic and positive manner. In order to put your child to sleep, either an anesthesiologist will be brought into the office or your child will be taken to a surgical center/OR to be put under. The anesthesiologist will start an IV and administer a safe dosage of a sedative agent. He will be closely monitored by the anesthesiologist for the duration of the procedure and through recovery. IV sedation is beneficial for patients who are pre-cooperative (too young to cooperate), have special needs, or have had a previous traumatic experience, or are just unable to safely complete treatment while awake. The anesthesiologist will discuss the preoperative care, risks, and post op care prior to the appointment. The anesthesia fees will be determined by the anesthesiologist or OR. We will do our best to give you an estimate of what the costs will be.
Dr. Marfatia has extensive experience with all forms of sedation. As a board certified Pediatric Dentist he is extremely qualified and trained in competing treatment while your child is sedated. His number one priority is to ensure the safety of your child. Based on the sedation given, a thorough medical evaluation will be done. If needed, your child will be given a medical clearance/consultation form to be competed by their primary care physician.