Pediatric Dental Sedation Ruffles Feathers Among Dentists

Pediatric dental sedationDentists are divided over pediatric dental sedation. Our survey found that half of dentists approve of pediatric sedation dentistry (with proper training, of course), while one in three feels a general dentist should never sedate a child.

“Kids are a different breed from adults when it comes to sedation, and you REALLY have to have thorough training to sedate them,” said one dentist.

Among survey respondents, 54% say it’s a great treatment modality that requires proper training; 11% are still am not certain of its safety; and 35% think general dentists should not be performing pediatric sedation.

Here’s a sample of what dentists had to say about pediatric dental sedation:

  • “It is a great way to treat children. However, weekend courses do not give one adequate training to sedate children; one needs to be formally trained.” (Arizona pediatric dentist)
  • “Proper training and the use of modern equipment are the key.” (California dentist)
  • “This is the most delicate group of all patients, and the one that GP’s should be very cautious when treated. This also is the group that has the most incidents when sedation is performed.”(Florida dentist)
  • “It should be done more often.” (Orthodontist)
  • “Just ask an anesthesiologist. They all say NO!!! No one should!!!” (Massachusetts pediatric dentist)
  • “I am a pediatric dentist. I used to offer it in my practice. I have stopped since 2004. I recommend that it is used ONLY in a hospital setting.” (Massachusetts pediatric dentist)
  • “There are a small number of general dentists who will obtain the necessary training to SAFELY provide sedation services for children, but I can’t for the life of me understand why they would want to.” (California oral surgeon)
  • “There is no excuse for inadequate training. You must be on top of your game and realize it is not successful all the time. Still will need a source where pedodontics can be done under a general anesthetic.” (Oklahoma dentist)
  • “Pediatric sedation should be performed only in a hospital setting and only for special-needs children. The rest of children do great if you will only be patient with them and do ‘show and tell.’ The most difficult children always, and I mean always, do great and overcome their fear if you give them time and love and show them how trust works.” (California children’s dentist)

Read more: Pediatric Sedation Dentistry Causes Disagreement Among Dentists

Listen to what Dr. Michael Silverman has to say about DOCS Education’s evolving stance on the subject: Dental Continuing Education for Pediatric Sedation

Kids’ Dental Health Related to Mom’s

Mothers with untreated tooth decay are twice as likely to have children who do too.

That’s according to a new study that was published in the Journal of Dental Research. Researchers at the University of California in San Francisco looked at the oral health of 179 mothers and 389 children.

This highlights the role of parental dental health in pediatric dentistry. In addition, parents may be more likely to treat tooth decay and gum disease if they realize it may negatively impact their children’s dental health.

Read more: Mums who neglect teeth impact on kids’ oral health

Pediatric Dentistry: Most Dentists Treat Kids

Pediatric dentistsMost dentists treat pediatric patients, found our recent survey. Ninety-five percent treat teens, and two out of three treat kids under 6.

“Pedodontists make their money the old fashioned way – they earn it!” opined one general dentist.

“I love caring for kids,” said one dentist, while another said, “I break out in hives when I treat anyone under 18.”

Here’s what else dentists had to say about children’s dentistry:Children's dentistry

  • “If you treat children like gold, you’ll see their mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, and grandparents as well!” (Virginia dentist)
  • “Life is too short.” (North Carolina dentist)
  • “If they can be reasoned with and kept calm with nitrous, I’ll treat them. I don’t treat anyone that is screaming and crying, and I don’t care how old they are!! Be calm, or take drugs!!” (Michigan dentist)
  • “It seems like parents readily spend money on their kids but compromise on themselves if required.” (Endodontist)
  • “If you do not enjoy treating them, then don’t! They know you do not like it and they get traumatized.” (Illinois pediatric dentist)

Read more: Dentistry for Children Offered by Most Dental Practices

Dentists Kind of Like Treating Children (VIDEO)

The clear majority of dentists are happy to accept pediatric patients, found our survey. Eighty-six percent of dental practices report that they accept child patients. The remaining 14% prefer to treat patients over age 14.

Rural and female dentists were most likely to practice pediatric dentistry.

Read more: After All, Kids Are the Dental Patients of the Future

Chocolate Bribe Angers Dentists, Delights Schoolchildren

Discipline Problems Down, Test Scores Up

A U.K. principal’s unusual plan to motivate students may have raised the wrath of the British Dental Association, but it seems to be working.

Three years ago, Andrew Sheppard grew frustrated with discipline problems at Norfolk’s Recastle Furze Primary School. He decided that the school’s 240 pupils would be rewarded for good behavior with chocolate bars.

The school hasn’t had a single suspension in the past three years. In addition, test scores have gotten higher. The rewards program has been expanded to include a Christmas dance, Easter eggs, and barbecues.

“I feel vindicated,” said Dr. Sheppard. “A 40-pence bar of chocolate is not going to make children obese or rot their teeth. It is providing them with an incentive that they value. Some people said that I should give them a carrot instead, but they are not donkeys.”

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