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PDAA Medical Doctors specialize in pediatric anesthesia in dental Offices in Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina. Young, fearful, or special needs children receive the same care as Surgery Centers or Hospitals with less cost and better convenience
A number of pediatric dentists are now offering sedation dentistry for their very young or special-needs patients. Some even provide in-office IV sedation. While local anesthesia is used in the majority of dental procedures performed on children, it may not be the best solution for all kids. IV sedation can be an option when local anesthesia or other sedation methods are not enough. When Might IV Sedation Be Recommended for Kids? “Sedation dentistry is a minor part of pediatric dentistry, but a very important part,” says Dennis Stone, MD, a pediatric anesthesiologist at Pediatric Dental Anesthesiology Associates in Jacksonville, Fla. The majority of Dr. Stone’s patients who require IV sedation for dental procedures are very young, often between 2 and 3 years of age. Others have medical issues that make it difficult for them to cooperate or tolerate dental procedures. “Approximately 25 percent of our pediatric dental patients are special needs children,” says Dr. Stone. Sometimes the patient is a child with extensive dental issues, who hasn’t received routine dental care. In these cases, IV sedation allows the dentist to treat numerous problems during one visit rather than scheduling multiple appointments. “It allows the patient to have a fresh start,” explains Stone. “Children are able to brush without pain, and parents can be instructed on oral hygiene, so the problem is avoided in the future.” Since IV sedation produces a brief period of amnesia, it allows children to have painful or complicated dental procedures and return home with very little memory of the experience. To avoid anxiety, Stone recommends that parents not warn their child about the needle stick ahead of time. When sensory distraction is used, he finds most children don’t even feel the actual stick. IV Sedation Versus Other Sedation Options For Kids IV sedation produces a deep sedation, but does not put the patient to sleep completely like the general anesthesia used during hospital surgeries. “In my group, we use an infusion pump to deliver the medication, and we can adjust the levels up and down,” Stone says. IV sedation is based on the needs of the patient, as well as the intensity and length of the procedure. In addition to IV sedation, there are a number of options dentists use to control pain, reduce anxiety and produce sedation during procedures. These include: Local anesthetic – delivered through an injection to numb the area the dentist will be working on. It does not produce sedation or alter the state of consciousness. Nitrous oxide – sometimes called laughing gas, it is a light form of conscious sedation that is inhaled through a mask and is short-acting. It helps reduce anxiety, but provides only partial sedation. Oral sedation – a pill given ahead of time that produces a calming effect. There is a risk the medication could wear off during the dental procedure. General Anesthesia – produces a deep sleep and requires a hospital setting, making this type of anesthesia much costlier for patients. Using IV sedation not only makes painful dental procedures more comfortable and tolerable for patients, it also allows the dentist to perform the work in the dental office rather than a hospital. This eliminates the need to transfer equipment and enables the dentist and staff to work in a familiar setting. The Safety of IV Sedation for Kids Before signing any consent forms, it is important for parents to verify the qualifications of the person who will be administering the IV sedation to their child. Regulations vary from state to state, but many pediatric dentists work with anesthesiologists, who are medical doctors trained to administer anesthetics to patients during surgery or procedures. Your child’s dentist may also have undergone special training in sedation dentistry. Any person administering IV sedation should be properly trained in the safe and effective use of sedation medications, and a qualified person(s) should be with your child throughout the process to monitor their condition and provide any necessary support. When administered by a trained professional, IV sedation is considered a safe option for children. As with any medical procedure, there are always risks, but Stone points out that anesthesia is safer today than ever before. “We have very good monitors and medications. The main thing is the qualifications of the person taking care of the child.” Statistically speaking, he points out, driving to the procedure is actually the riskiest part.
We love what we do and it shows! Here is PDAA's newest review from another very happy patient and their family: "After visiting four dentists, I thought getting a thorough dental exam, for my son with autism, was not possible. I had been told he would have to be taken to a hospital and put under general anesthesia to have a proper check up and cleaning. Finally, I found Jorge E. Landa D.M.D. of Pediatric Dentistry of Kendall and Gershon Fink D.O. of and Pediatric Dental Anesthesiology Associates who with use of intravenous sedation were able to give my son the care he needed including: x-rays, and fillings. The entire process was so positive for my son and for my husband and me as well. The procedure was done at the dental office where the anesthesiology staff made sure that my son was safe yet comfortable the entire time. Shim kept us informed every step of the way and carried my, still sleeping son, to me so that he would be in my arms when he awoke. He even carried my purse to my car and opened my door so that I could continue to hold on to my son. He was a true super hero as his medical scrubs depicted. Thanks!!!"