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Opioid and Multi-Drug Pediatric Dental Sedation: A Narrative Review

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Pharmacological behavior guidance has long been a mainstay of pediatric dental care. Behavioral limitations of very young children and dental fear in adolescents and children with special health care needs have made sedation and general anesthesia important to quality care delivery for these populations. The purposes of this review are to provide a broad perspective on the historical and contemporary use of sedation in pediatric dentistry, summarize available data on the safety and efficacy of opioid and multi-drug moderate sedation protocols, and consider the growing role of minimal intervention dentistry and the importance of patient and medication selection.


Document Type: Review Article

Affiliations: 1: Dr. Nelson, Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Pediatric Dentistry, University of Washington, Seattle, Wash, USA 2: Dr. Wilson, Chief Dental Officer, Blue Cloud Pediatric Surgery Centers, LLC,Glen Rock, Penn, and an Adjunct Professor, Department of Pediatric Dentistry, Nationwide Children???s Hospital/The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, USA 3: Dr. Tanbonliong, Associate Clinical professor, Department of Orofacial Sciences, Division of Pediatric Dentistry, University of California, San Francisco, Calif, USA

Publication date: January 1, 2022

More about this publication?
  • Acquired after the merger between the American Society of Dentistry for Children and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry in 2002, the Journal of Dentistry for Children (JDC) is an internationally renowned journal whose publishing dates back to 1934. Published three times a year, JDC promotes the practice, education and research specifically related to the specialty of pediatric dentistry. It covers a wide range of topics related to the clinical care of children, from clinical techniques of daily importance to the practitioner, to studies on child behavior and growth and development. JDC also provides information on the physical, psychological and emotional conditions of children as they relate to and affect their dental health.
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