In-Office Sedation Anesthesia
The majority of dental treatment procedures for children are completed in office by Dr. Gill or her associate dentist Dr. Stephens and staff, using a variety of "behavior guidance techniques". The use of local anesthesia (a.k.a. Novocaine) and/ or nitrous oxide (a.k.a. laughing gas) may also be needed to allow for a comfortable and positive dental treatment experience for your child. In some instances, however, all best efforts and techniques for treatment are unsuccessful. Younger children especially, including those with no prior dental experience or kids who otherwise are fearful of the dentist, may require some form of sedation in order to safely and effectively complete any necessary treatment.
As parents, we want our children to receive the best and most comprehensive treatment possible. While many of us avoid the dentist at some point in time because of anxiety or fear, children (especially younger ones) react to dental procedures based on a limited understanding of it's necessity or value. Furthermore, children may find it difficult to keep their mouth open for extended lengths of time, be distrusting of "strangers" and/or have short attention spans. This, as you might imagine can make it difficult, if not impossible, to complete extensive treatment in-office without the use of sedation anesthesia. Delay of treatment for whatever reason (including failed attempts at treatment in offices) can lead to mouth pain, infection, loss of important teeth and/or emergency room visits.
For the aforementioned child patients, Dr. Gill (board certified pediatric dentist) is now offering in-office general anesthesia at PKD! Here at PKD, your child can receive dental care while "sleeping" in a safe, familiar and monitored environment. To help reduce the wait-list time for scheduling at outpatient surgery facilities, we are scheduling in-office sedation anesthesia appointments (a.k.a. inhalation/general anesthesia) on a case-by-case basis. Dr. Gill, along with SmileMD pediatric anesthesiologists will select healthy child candidates ranging in age from 4-12 to be treated at PKD. (Ages 3 and under will continue to be scheduled at outpatient facilities as needed.) Children aged 4-12 years with acute dental pain/infection/extensive dental disease will take priority in scheduling.
SmileMD Inc is a group of pediatric anesthesiologists. Dr. Chris Gushue is our primary anesthesiologist we use at PKD. They specialize in keeping your child comfortably asleep while Dr. Gill effectively completes all planned treatment in that one office visit. SmileMD uses medications and monitors (while following ALL safety protocols) equal to those used in hospitals. Each child patient will receive individually prepared and titrated anesthetic with close and continuous monitoring throughout the duration of dental treatment. IV anesthetic medications in combination with gas inhalation anesthesia is used to provide a short-acting/ fast-recovery effect so your child can recover and go home quickly. (Your child may have already undergone other surgical procedures under this method of sedation anesthesia, such as: tonsil removal, placement of ear tubes or other minor surgeries). After treatment is completed by Dr. Gill, a dedicated nurse (PALS certified and registered) will remain with your child in the recovery area, up until the time of discharge from PKD office.
More questions about general anesthesia for children's dental treatment? Ask Dr. Gill or SmileMD and/or refer to these resources for additional information: