Pediatric Sedation Dentistry FAQ

Who Performs Pediatric Sedation?

When you child undergoes pediatric sedation it will be under the care of a pediatric anesthesiologist. Our own anesthesiologists have completed the necessary training and additional training regarding anesthesia for children and infants.

Is Anesthesia Safe for Children?

Before recommending anesthesia for a patient we review the past and present history of their health to uncover any red flags. Should your child be at a high risk for potential problems with the anesthesia we will refer you to either a surgery center or the hospital. The majority of patients are not at a high risk for problems and modern anesthesia is very safe.

Is My Child Monitored and How?

We take great care to monitor your child with state of the art equipment and with the same care you would find in the operating room of a hospital. An IV is placed in a foot or hand vein and a pulse oximeter sensor is placed on the big toe to monitor your child’s oxygen levels and pulse. We will place a tube underneath your child’s nose that will monitor their breathing.

The following includes what is monitored by our equipment while your child is sedated:

Child’s breathing pattern (End Tidal Capnography)

Child’s oxygen levels and pulse (Pulse Oximeter)

Electrical activity of the child’s heart (EKG)

5 minute automatic intervals check your child’s blood pressure.

Child’s temperature as needed.

Breathing and heart beat is monitored.

Can Children with Medical Problems Undergo Sedation?

There are certain medical conditions that may not be suitable for sedation in our local office. Such conditions include diabetes, severe behavioural problems, congenital abnormalities, seizures, and severe asthma. After careful review and consideration we might refer you to the hospital for your child’s dental care or a surgery center. You can also call one of our offices to discuss this further with one of our receptionists.

Is My Child Allowed to Eat or Drink Before Sedation?

Fasting is necessary to ensure an empty stomach prior to being sedated. Otherwise, food or fluid could be regurgitated under anesthesia. There is no way around this and it is required for your child to undergo IV sedation. Your child should not eat for 6 hours prior to the procedure nor drink for 3 hours prior.

Are There Safety Concerns Regarding Anesthesia’s Effect on My Child’s Brain?

Each year there are more than one million children under 4 years of age in the U.S. alone that have surgery where anesthesia is required. The majority recover fine but there are animal studies that need more research to further ensure the safety of children and sedation. For now your primary physician can tell you how to proceed. Many young children only have surgery when it’s required or beneficial to their wellbeing. However, if your physician recommends it and you prolong the surgery, your child could develop rather severe health problems so it’s advised that you proceed per your physicians instructions.

Martindale Dental provides both general and specialty dentistry under one roof.  For more than 20 years, our dentists have been advocates for their patients oral health care needs. Our dental offices are conveniently located in Toronto, North York, St Catharines, North York, Burlington, Milton East and Milton West, Ontario. We offer convenient before & after work and weekend appointments.