Comprehensive Pediatric Sedation in Phoenix

Smiling beautiful girl with healthy white teeth

At Wee Care Dental, we understand that sometimes visiting the dentist can be intimidating, especially for young children. Our pediatric dentist, Dr. Rick, specializes in treating the smiles of children with such gentle care and compassion, he’s been awarded for it! Since first establishing his practice in 1989, he’s made it his mission to provide a friendly and harmonious atmosphere with pediatric sedation tailored to the unique needs of every child.

Our team offers nitrous oxide and oral conscious sedation options to help ease dental anxiety and alleviate fear. This not only allows your toddler, child, or teen to receive the professional dental care they need, but it also helps provide comprehensive treatment in a single visit. It is our goal to provide children with a safe and relaxing environment where they can feel comfortable and trust coming to our pediatric dentist.

For more information on how to include pediatric sedation at your child’s next appointment, contact our Northern Phoenix team today!


Does My Child Need Sedation?

Our pediatric dentist may recommend sedation for several reasons. Since most young children and those with special needs often do not have the patience to remain still in the dental chair, soothing words and careful explanations may not always work.

Dental sedation may help if:

  • Your child is scared or has noticeable anxiety about receiving dental care.
  • Your child has a strong gag reflex.
  • Your child has sensitive teeth.
  • There has been difficulty with numbing medication in the past.
  • Your child has behavioral or emotional limitations that make routine dental care a challenge.
  • Your child’s dental or oral health needs require longer, more extensive treatment.
  • Your child is very young and needs intricate dental care.

Helping Children with Special Needs Using Pediatric Sedation

Portrait of beautiful young girl on the playground

Any child may have a difficult time getting used to the dental office at first. This, however, can be even more challenging for children with special needs. Fortunately, our pediatric dentist has decades of experience treating children with special needs and communicating with parents. Dr. Rick works with you closely to create a treatment plan that is completely customized to your child’s specific emotional, mental, and physical needs.

Pediatric sedation can be an excellent option for your child. The right method administered and monitored carefully by Dr. Rick can provide the most positive dental experiences possible. When allowed to receive professional dental care in a comfortable and calming atmosphere, children adapt and have fun, and achieve optimal oral health and well-being.

Is Sedation Dentistry Safe for My Child?

Absolutely! Dr. Rick is extensively trained and certified by the state of Arizona to provide oral conscious sedation. Together with our team, your child is carefully monitored throughout the procedure. We make sure only to administer the right amount of medication necessary, tailoring care to your child’s specific needs.

What Pediatric Sedation Options Do You Provide?

Our approach to sedation is conservative, and we always use the minimum amount of medication to ensure safe and straightforward treatment. At Wee Care Dental, we believe there is nothing more important than your child’s safety!

Dr. Rick Meyers provides the following pediatric sedation options:

Nitrous Oxide: Also known as “laughing gas,” this is recommended for children who may need a little extra support feeling comfortable while receiving care.

Oral Conscious: Our pediatric dentist may suggest this form of sedation to help your child become sleepy, allowing for more relaxation during longer or more complex dental procedures.

How Does Nitrous Oxide Work?

little boy getting nitrous oxide sedation at dental clinic

Nitrous oxide is mixed with oxygen and delivered through a small mask over the nose. Once comfortable, we’ll ask your child to breathe through their nose, not through the mouth. As the gentle gas begins to take effect, your child becomes less agitated and more relaxed.

The effects of nitrous sedation are mild. During their procedure, your child remains awake and can still interact with our pediatric dentist. They’ll be too relaxed to be concerned about what is happening around them. When the gas is turned off, the effects wear off quickly. We’ll give your child pure oxygen for a few minutes after treatment. This helps to flush any remaining gas from their body safely.

How Does Oral Conscious Sedation Work?

Conscious sedation can allow your child more comfort and relaxation if they have higher levels of anxiety during routine dental care. After taking the medication, your child will still be able to respond to our voices and will maintain their reflexes.

Conscious sedation is used when a child requires a lot of dental treatment or has special needs. At Wee Care Dental, Dr. Rick provides this type of pediatric sedation in liquid form. Your child is given enough time to drink the medication to ensure it works properly – about 45 minutes beforehand.

What You Need to Know Before Choosing the Right Sedation Method

Before helping you determine the best form of pediatric sedation, Dr. Rick and our team must first ask a series of important questions. We’ll ask you if your child is taking any medications currently and if they have any medical conditions that could make breathing through their nose more difficult, such as allergies or respiratory conditions. Prior medical conditions and other factors can affect the choice of sedation our Northern Phoenix pediatric dentist recommends.

Everything we do here at Wee Care Dental revolves around the complete comfort and safety of children. Therefore, our team takes the time to work closely with our patients and their parents, making sure we recommend the right treatments and design plans that align perfectly with your child’s specific needs.

Preparing for Your Child’s Appointment

Once you've scheduled your child’s appointment, you’ll need to prepare them for their procedure, especially if it includes sedation. Continue reading below to discover helpful recommendations from Dr. Rick and our team.

The night before: Depending on the kind of sedation your child is receiving, we’ll advise you not to feed them past midnight the night before their appointment. Your child can drink water or clear juice. The night before is also a great time to help prepare your child for anything else regarding their appointment. If your child has a favorite comforting item, such as a stuffed animal or blanket, you can pack a bag with these for their appointment the next day.

The day of: Be sure to not give your child food before their procedure. It’s common for children to be a little anxious on the day of their appointment. The most helpful thing you can do as a parent is to remain calm, stay positive, and encouraging. Remember that pediatric dental care for your child is essential to their oral health, dental development, and overall well-being. Dr. Rick always administers care in a compassionate and skilled manner.

Caring for Your Child After Sedation

Once home, your child may be drowsy and will need your supervision until they’re fully recovered from the effects of sedation. If your child sleeps, be sure to position them on their side with their head supported by a pillow and their chin up. During this time, we recommend checking your child’s breathing every three to five minutes. If they begin to snore, reposition their head until the snoring subsides. Because your child may be tired, be sure to restrict activities for the remainder of the day. Refrain from letting them participate in activities such as swimming, using playground equipment, or bike riding as it may take a little longer to regain their full balance.

Mom with little girl reading book in sofa

Children can also be a little irritable after treatment. If so, stay with your child for the rest of the day to monitor them closely and provide a calming environment. If you believe the irritability is due to discomfort, you may give them Tylenol®, ibuprofen Advil®, or Motrin®. Make sure to follow the instructions on the bottle carefully, as the dosages are based on your child’s weight and age.

Once your child is alert, you can give them sips of clear liquids to help prevent any chance for dehydration or nausea. Our team recommends small sips taken repeatedly. Your child’s first meal after having sedation should be something easily digestible and light. We recommend foods like apple sauce, Jell-O®, and soups. Do not give them fatty or spicy foods such as cheese, milk, yogurt, tacos, salsas, or fries.

Contact Us to Discover How Pediatric Sedation Can Help Your Child

For young patients with anxiety issues, sensitive teeth, or those with special needs, pediatric sedation provides a better way for them to receive beneficial dental care in the most calming and comfortable way possible. To find out if pediatric sedation is the right addition to your child’s treatment, contact Wee Care Dental today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Rick and his accommodating team.