Is Dental Sedation Safe for Children?

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When it comes to dental sedation and your child, safety should be everyone’s first concern. Something as important as sedating a child for a dental procedure should only be done by an expert in children’s health, such as a children’s dentist. 

Not only does a kid’s dentist have the expertise and knowledge of safe sedation methods for children, they are trained how to help a nervous child feel safe and comfortable during a dental procedure. This is vital in order to protect the child’s personal sense of well-being.

Laughing Gas for Nervous Children 


If a child feels overly stressed or frightened, dental sedation may be necessary to help the patient relax and feel calm. The most popular choice for this is nitrous oxide, or laughing gas as it is commonly called. Oxygen mixed with laughing gas is administered with a mask over the child’s nose. 

This type of dental sedation will start to take effect within minutes and the child will begin to feel happy and relaxed.  Immediately following the procedure, only oxygen will be given via the mask to make sure all laughing gas is removed from the child’s system.

Putting Safety First 

Before your children’s dentist performs a procedure, they will ask questions about your child. Any medical concerns, such as allergies, previous illness or a pre-existing health condition will be noted and taken into consideration. 

When speaking with your child’s dentist, be sure to answer all questions as thoroughly as possible. Also, provide the child’s general physician’s name and phone number for the dentist to contact for more information if necessary, especially if your child has a medical condition. 

You should also inform the dentist if your child receives any sort of medication, vitamin supplements, or over-the-counter health products. All of this information is important for the dentist to know in order to determine what type of dental sedation is suitable for your child.

Depending on the type of sedation a child may need, a kid-friendly dentist will give instructions to parents about eating and drinking prior to the procedure.  When using laughing gas for sedation, a light meal is recommended prior to the procedure.  A heavy meal or no meal can cause nausea when using laughing gas for sedation.  For IV sedation, an empty stomach is vital in order to prevent your child from vomiting and inhaling the stomach’s contents into their lungs.  


If you have any questions about dental sedation, do not hesitate to contact our office. We can discuss options for your child’s dental procedures and talk further with you about the safety precautions we use. 

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