Pediatric Sedation Dentist in Las Vegas, NV

How can my anxious child get the dental care they need?

Unfortunately, not all children have positive memories of the dentist. Some children may be more sensitive or find it difficult to sit still during treatment. But there are solutions that can make receiving dental care more comfortable for them.

Sedation options are an effective way to give your child the dental care they need without the discomfort or anxiety that may come with their cleanings or restorative care. There’s no reason that dental treatment should be painful. And all it takes for your child to get started with sedation dentistry is a simple conversation with your Las Vegas pediatric dentist. Schedule an appointment today at Desert Kids Dental.

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Did you know…

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Laughing gas is safe, effective, and has been used in dentistry since the late 19th century.

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What can I expect at a sedation consultation?

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Treatment Review

Your child’s dentist will review their treatment plan to determine if sedation is a good option for their procedure. Sometimes sedation may be recommended, or necessary, for more invasive or lengthy dental procedures. But there are options that are better for relieving tension and anxiety so your child can remain comfortable during treatment.

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Health Evaluation

The dentist will then discuss with you your child’s health history and current overall health to determine if sedation is appropriate for them. Certain health issues may affect how your child responds to sedation, so it’s important to have a comprehensive view of their physical health before we agree upon sedation.

Recommendations & Options

With the information your child’s dentist has collected, they will lay out all available sedation options and discuss with you each one’s effects and instructions. With their recommendation and your input, we can help you choose the right option for your child and their procedure.

Explore your child’s sedation options

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Laughing Gas or Minimally Inhaled Sedation

This method of sedation is ideal if your child is nervous at the dentist or if your child has trouble sitting still for their exams and cleanings. The dentist will pump a mixture of nitrous oxide (laughing gas) and oxygen through a nose mask, and your child will breathe through this mask whenever directed to do so.

As they breathe in the gas, they’ll begin to feel less nervous, and may experience a “floaty” or “dreamy” feeling. Children don’t fall asleep with laughing gas, but they’ll be very calm throughout their procedure.

A few of the best benefits of this sedation method is that side effects are minimal, and the effects of the sedation wear off within a few minutes of the nose mask being removed. Your child can go back to school or to their daily activities after their appointment.

Oral Conscious Sedation

Oral conscious sedation uses a pill or liquid sedative that your child will take about 30-60 minutes before their appointment. Once the sedative takes effect, they’ll begin to feel groggy and tired. In some cases, your child may end up falling asleep during their treatment, or may forget much of their procedure.
Side effects are more prolonged compared to nitrous oxide sedation. Grogginess will likely continue for 4-6 hours after the appointment, so you will need to plan the rest of your day accordingly.

General Anesthesia

General anesthesia is typically used only for the most invasive dental surgeries. This is because it requires the use of a ventilator to help patients breathe, and it will render your child completely unconscious — they will not feel anything or remember anything about the procedure.
Therefore, the need for general anesthesia is rare. Routine dental treatments can usually be performed with other sedation options.

Did you know…

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Nitrous oxide keeps restless children calm while receiving dental treatment.

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Have questions about sedation options for your child?
Find answers here.

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What is sedation used for in dentistry?

Sedation is most often used to treat dental anxiety and keep children at ease during their treatment. Fear of the dentist is very common, and sedation can keep your child calm during their appointments. 

Additionally, sedation helps with pain and discomfort during more invasive procedures, such as tooth extractions. It also helps young patients feel more comfortable if they need to sit still for longer treatment times.

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Is sedation dentistry right for my child?

As long as your child is healthy and is not taking any medications that may interfere with the sedation, your child should be a good candidate for sedation dentistry. Contact us to learn more about sedation options for your child. We can discuss any concerns you may have during a consultation.

What does sedation dentistry feel like for my child?

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This depends on the method of sedation. With laughing gas, your child will feel light-headed, giggly, and relaxed, but will be fully conscious and aware of their surroundings. They will also feel less discomfort during treatment.

Oral conscious sedation and IV sedation will usually make patients feel groggy or sleepy. Your child will likely fall asleep, and probably won’t remember much about the procedure. However, they will not be unconscious, and can still be woken and respond to commands.

General anesthesia is the deepest level of sedation. Your child will be completely unconscious and will not feel anything or remember anything from the procedure.

Is sedation dentistry safe for toddlers?

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When done correctly, sedation dentistry for children, even toddlers, is completely safe. Several precautions are taken to ensure a seamless experience. First, we’ll take a detailed health history to make sure we recommend the right sedation option. We’ll then discuss options with the parent or guardian so that you understand the effects and are prepared to care for your child after their procedure. All methods of sedation dentistry are provided at our office except general anesthesia.  General anesthesia is only provided at an out-patient surgery center or hospital-setting.

What If My Child Is Anxious About The Dentist?

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The most important thing you can do to help with your child’s dental anxiety is to see the right dentist. Kids often develop dental anxiety or their anxiety worsens if they see a dentist who is unfriendly or otherwise provides a less-than-excellent dental experience. 

Dr. Thompson is a board-certified pediatric dentist, and she was trained in advanced behavior management techniques at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, which is ranked #3 in the nation. 

While we do offer sedation dentistry in Las Vegas, the team at Desert Kids Dentistry often doesn’t need to use sedation to help your child feel more comfortable during their treatment. Contact us to learn more, and to see why we’re the best choice for anxious kids in Las Vegas.

When To Consider Sleep Dentistry For Your Child

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Oral conscious sedation is also sometimes called “sleep dentistry,” because kids often fall asleep and forget what happens during their procedure when they’re treated using this method of dental sedation. 

At Desert Kids Dental, we primarily recommend nitrous oxide (laughing gas) for kids because it’s very convenient, requires no pills, and wears off quickly. However, there are some situations where sleep dentistry with oral conscious sedation may be preferable.

For example, if your child is very nervous or anxious about their appointment, oral conscious sedation will help them feel more relaxed during their treatment at Desert Kids Dental, and may be a superior choice compared to laughing gas.

Sleep dentistry may also be a good choice for kids who have trouble sitting still for long periods of time. The drugs used for oral conscious sedation will let your child rest and sleep soundly through their appointment. This means Dr. Thompson and our dental team can perform their treatment more quickly and efficiently.

We also usually recommend sleep dentistry for children who need oral surgery like a tooth extraction. This type of surgery can be very scary and intimidating to kids, so a deeper level of sedation is usually helpful for keeping your child calm and comfortable during their treatment at Desert Kids Dental.

Is Sedation Safe?

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Yes. Sedation is absolutely safe. At Desert Kids Dental, Dr. Sandra Thompson is an experienced sedation dentist, and has the training and experience to keep your child safe throughout their entire appointment.

Treatments like nitrous oxide sedation and oral conscious sedation have extremely low complication rates, and when they do occur, these complications are almost never dangerous or life-threatening.

Throughout your child’s procedure, their vital signs and health will be closely monitored by our dental team to ensure that their treatment is progressing safely and properly. 

In addition, to make sure that sedation is safe for your child, Dr. Thompson will discuss their health history with you, as well as any medications or supplements they may be taking. This ensures she has a complete understanding of your little one’s health, and any other issues that may interfere with safe sedation at Desert Kids Dental.

Did you know…

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16% of school age children have a fear of the dentist.

Is your child ready for their dental appointment?

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