Here at Loudoun Pediatric Dentistry, we are proud to offer sedation to give our patients a stress-free visit.

Conscious sedation is commonly used in our practice. We use it on children who are really afraid of the dentist. It is also helpful for young children who won’t sit still and children with special needs.

When we use conscious sedation, your child will be very sleepy. Some children even fall asleep, but they will not lose consciousness.

We use a variety of medications for conscious sedation. After discussing your child with you, we will determine which medication (or mixture of medications) will work best for your child. This will depend on your child and what procedure we are doing.

Before your appointment, it is important to let us know if your child has any changes to his or her health. If your child has become ill with a fever, infection, or cold, we may need to postpone treatment. It is also important to let us know what medications your child is taking. If your child has reactions or allergies to drugs, we need to know about it too.

Before your child comes into the office, we need you to keep your child from eating for at least six hours. He or she can have only clear liquids but they too must be stopped about four hours prior to the procedure. We also recommend dressing your child in comfortable clothes that are loose fitting. You should also take your child to the bathroom when he or she gets to our office.

It is important that parents stay with their children for the whole visit. We recommend watching them closely while the medication starts to work. You may even want to hold your child in your lap. If your child runs around, it will take even longer for the medications to work. Your child will slowly become sleepy, though they may get excited at first.

After your child’s appointment, your child will be sleepy for several hours. He or she will need to be watched closely and kept away from anything that could cause harm. If your child wants to sleep, that is alright, but he or she should sleep on his or her side and with his or her chin up. We recommend that you wake your child up every hour and make sure your child is drinking.

Be careful if your child becomes nauseous. If your child vomits, help him or her bend over. Be sure to turn the head to the side so that your child doesn’t inhale the vomit. Because we also use a local anesthesia, your child might bite or chew on the tongue, lips, and inside of the cheek. Your child might also feel itchy and scratch at himself or herself.