It is quite common for a child to be somewhat afraid or anxious at the dental office. Our office environment and staff are all geared to creating a positive and comfortable environment for children. However, some children will still need a little extra help to get through a procedure. Here at Southern Maine Pediatric Dentistry we offer two types of sedation, the first being minimal or moderate sedation and the second being deep sedation to help calm and ease our fearful or anxious patients.

Minimal or Moderate Sedation
Minimal or moderate conscious sedation is commonly used for the treatment of fear and anxiety with dental procedures. Some children will require a slightly deeper level of sedation to complete necessary dental work. During minimal and moderate sedation, your child will remain awake, able to respond to verbal requests, but may be somewhat altered. This method of treatment is recommended for mildly apprehensive or anxious children.

Why would my child need sedation?
Dentistry can be hard for children. There are noises, tastes and sensations that can be difficult for a child to tolerate. Children who are anxious and fearful will benefit from this modality. Children who are pre-cooperative or have extensive needs, may need minimal or moderate sedation to get through the procedure.

Is sedation safe?
Minimal or moderate sedation and the medicines we use are very safe. Our doctors have specialized training to treat patients in office with sedation. Your child’s vitals will be monitored closely during treatment and afterwards to ensure safety. Please discuss all medications, including over the counter products that your child takes regularly. In most circumstance you will be able to give your child ONLY medications that he/she takes routinely (example: seizure meds, antibiotics or medications prescribed by your child’s physician.) DO NOT give any other medications before or after treatment without confirming with our office first.

Will my child be emotional at this appointment?
Your child may become emotional during his/her sedation appointment. Your child will be awake throughout the appointment. This is how some children react to the dental environment and treatment. Benefits of the medication’s amnesia property are seen after treatment, days and weeks, usually months later.

Deep Sedation
Now let us tell you about our second form of sedation, deep sedation. Deep sedation is sometimes necessary for children who are unable to cooperate during dental treatment. Patients who pose a threat to their own safety or who have extensive needs and cannot cooperate through treatment may benefit from deep sedation. We utilize a certified pediatric anesthesiologist from Pediatric Dental Anesthesia Associates out of Tampa, Florida. If your child needs IV sedation we will have Dr. Hector Vila, who is a board certified pediatric anesthesiologist, or one of his team members, come to our office so we can complete your child’s dental needs without having to go to the hospital. Click here to learn more about Dr. Vila and his team and to take a tour of IV sedation. It’s a wonderful resource with loads of helpful, detailed information.

There are many forms of sedation to help your child through his or her appointment. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us today at (207) 773-3111.