Julie M. Russo D.M.D.

Diplomate of the American
Board of Pediatric Dentistry

Consious Sedation

What is conscious sedation?

Conscious sedation is a management technique that uses medication to help the child cope with fear and anxiety in order to receive dental care.

Who should be sedated?

Children who have a level of anxiety that prevents good coping skills should be sedated. The very young child that does not understand how to cope in a cooperative fashion for the safe delivery of dental care should be sedated. It is also helpful for some children with special needs.

Why utilize conscious sedation?

Conscious sedation aids in allowing a child to cope better with dental treatment. This can help prevent injury to the child from sudden patient movements and promotes a better environment for providing dental care.

Is sedation safe?

Sedation is safe when administered by a trained pediatric dentist who follows the sedation guidelines of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. Dr. Russo will discuss sedation options and patient monitoring for the protection of your child. As with any type of anesthesia, there are risks that Dr. Russo will discuss with you.

Will my child be asleep?

No, your child will be awake during the procedure. The benefit for some children is that conscious sedation can cause an amnesia like effect. Most children cry throughout the treatment and this should be anticipated. Protective stabilization is used to keep the child safe during the procedure.

What special instructions should I follow before the sedation?

In order to alleviate potential anxiety in your child, Dr. Russo recommends minimal discussion of the dental appointment with your child. Should your child become ill, contact Dr. Russo to see if it will be necessary to postpone the appointment. It is very important to follow the directions regarding fasting from fluids and foods prior to the sedation appointment.