As a parent, it may be extremely challenging to convince your child to make a trip to the dentist. Not only do they crib about the long wait, but they may also refrain from going because of the time-consuming and sometimes painful procedures.
Children also have other issues such as severe anxiety related to dentist visits, they may have special needs, deal with problems like gag reflex, etc., all of which make visiting the dentist a nightmare. However, thanks to sedation dentistry, children and parents can now have a hassle-free experience at the dentist.
What is child sedation dentistry, you ask? It is a procedure where medication is administered safely to patients to help them relax and have an anxiety-free experience. During the procedure, the kids are safely sedated under the doctor’s watchful eyes so that they can be treated comfortably.
Some children even wake up not even remembering the procedure, which can prevent problems like dental anxiety. To learn more about sedation dentistry and whether or not your child is a suitable candidate, read on.
Signs Your Child May Be A Good Candidate For Sedation Dentistry
There are several signs you could evaluate to see if your child may be a good candidate for sedation dentistry. Some of them are as follows:
Extreme Fear Or Anxiety About Dental Treatment
Some children may experience extreme fear when it comes to visiting the dentist. Sometimes, it may even manifest itself into dentophobia, a clinical phobia, where an individual is so afraid of the dentist or dental procedures that they avoid seeing the dentist even when they’re in pain.
If left untreated, it could result in worsening of the condition and poor dental hygiene. If your child also avoids going to the dentist at great lengths, they may make a suitable candidate for sedation dentistry. With inhaled minimal sedation or simple oral sedation, your child could be easily and safely put to sleep for the entire duration of the procedure.
Having Sensitive Teeth Or Gums
Having sensitive teeth and gums may lead to several everyday problems, including soreness, pain when you bite into something cold, etc. However, it becomes more painful to have dental procedures on your sensitive teeth and gums, which reduce your pain threshold drastically.
While dentists generally numb your child’s mouth during a painful procedure, they may still feel some discomfort due to sensitive teeth and gums. So it is advised to speak to your doctor and ask them about the best sedation dentistry options for your child. This will make the procedure less scary for the child and give them a less fearful experience.
Requiring Extensive Dental Work
Some procedures may require more extensive and thorough dental work than others. These may take several hours and would require the child to keep their mouths open for a long period, leading to severe discomfort.
If your child has dental procedures that require more work than usual, please speak with your dentist about available sedation options. This is because your child will make an excellent candidate for sedation dentistry as it offers a pleasant and relaxing alternative.
Difficulty Getting Numb
In most cases, especially with children, dentists use a numbing agent to make the experience more pleasurable. However, due to several reasons, such as sudden movements or flinches during the administration of the numbing agent, it may become challenging to numb the particular area.
In other instances, local anesthesia may also serve to be ineffective and inefficient. In these cases, your child can opt for sedation dentistry.
A Strong Gag Reflex
If your child has a sensitive gag reflex, then dental check-ups and procedures can be distressing and uncomfortable, to say the least. This condition is characterized by an urge to choke or sputter when it is touched or stimulated by a foreign object.
Sensitive gag reflex could also prove to be dangerous during a procedure as a child may gag involuntarily during a procedure, leading to more severe complications. Hence, in such a situation, it would be wise to put your child under, so the procedure could take place without the gagging response.
Sensory Processing Issues
Sensory processing issues are when a child is overwhelmed by all the information that comes in through the senses and has trouble responding to it. Children with this problem may find the dental environment nerve-wracking, which may cause the experience to be unpleasant.Apart from the bright fluorescent lights and noisy dental equipment, they could also be triggered by unfamiliar and unpleasant scents. To help your child who has sensory processing issues, speak to your dentist about safe sedation dentistry alternatives to make trips to the dentist bearable.