Part of the specialty training of a pediatric dentist involves the use of sedation when appropriate.  Each child’s case is different, and an individualized plan will be presented to you based on your child’s dental needs.

Children who are very young or who have a high level of anxiety that interferes with the cooperation necessary for the dentist to perform treatment may require some level of sedation. Sedation is also helpful for children with special health care needs. There are many safe and effective drugs available today that can help relax the child and promote a good environment for optimal and safe dental treatment.

Sedation options available at our pediatric dental office include:

  • Anti-anxiety oral medication
  • Nitrous Oxide Sedation (also known as laughing gas)
  • General Anesthesia – performed at Mercy Hospital in Iowa City, IA

It’s important to remember that options for anti-anxiety or sedation are dependent on your individual child needs.  Not all children are candidates for sedation options.  The doctor will discuss with your which options may be available based on your child’s dental needs, age, cooperation level, and health.  

Sedation dentistry is most helpful for:

  • Infants
  • Children who require major dental treatment
  • A very anxious child
  • Children that have had traumatic dental experiences (sound and smell aversion)
  • Children with a strong gag reflex
  • Children who are medically compromised or have special healthcare needs