General anesthesia may be called for in complex child dentistry cases, where it is necessary that your child be completely unconscious, unable to feel pain or move around.

What is General Anesthesia?

General anesthesia involves fully sedating your child, usually through an intravenous needle, in order to perform more complex dental procedures such as wisdom teeth extractions.

Our office may recommend general anesthesia  if your child:

  • cannot relax enough for treatment to be safely performed
  • does not respond well to nitrous oxide sedation or oral sedation
  • requires oral surgery that may be difficult to tolerate awake
  • requires extensive dental treatments that are best done in a single appointment
  • has a disability that limits their ability to understand directions

Prior to receiving general anesthesia, your child will undergo a physical examination to ensure that they’re healthy and don’t have any pre-conditions that may interfere with the anesthesia. If your child is eligible for general anesthesia, you will receive information on any restrictions and the procedure in depth.

If your child does not feel well (has a cold, the flu, a fever) on the day of the appointment, please inquire whether the procedures will need to be rescheduled.

Please speak to your child about the procedure, and give them time to ask questions.

Your child should be able to return to their normal routine even a day after general anesthesia. You are the best judge of whether your child requires more rest or if they are able to resume their activities. Don’t hesitate to call our office if you have any questions about general anesthesia, dental sedation for children, or how to best care for your child’s oral health.

For less anxious children, we also use other sedation methods such as Conscious Sedation.