How do I care for my sedated child once I leave the office?

Huffman Family Dentistry

Taking your kids to the dentist is hard enough but dealing with them being sedated can often be a scary and overwhelming process. Although sedation procedures are dealt with the utmost care and safety as with every other dental or medical procedure there are some risks involved. To help eliminate and reduce these risks there are some things you can do when taking your sedated child home after the dentist. Below are just a few simple things to keep in mind.

Soft Foods

After a dentist visit, especially one in which the child has been sedated the child’s mouth and gums may still be sore for several hours or even days after the procedure. After all, there are different levels of sedation. To help with this it is important to try to only feed your child soft foods. Not only will this be easier for them to chew but it will also reduce the amount of movement in their mouth. Some good options include oatmeal, yogurt, mashed potatoes, pudding and even soft cheeses including cottage cheese and cream cheese. Some other good options include eggs, soup and even smoothies or milkshakes which can also be a good treat after a long dental visit.

No School

Most dentists will advise the parent or caregiver that the child should not go to school for the rest of the day. This is not only due to the fact that they may be in pain but they also may still be groggy from the sedation.


After being sedated children will feel groggy and tired sometimes for a few hours after the procedure. The best way to combat this is to make sure they get plenty of rest. Setting up a couch in the house or perhaps a reclining chair is a great way to keep them comfortable and relaxed. Fill the space with pillows and blankets as well as some activities they can do on hand such as coloring or even reading. It is also a great time to lay back and watch some movies or catch up on their favorite TV shows.


Popsicles are not only another great food to eat after a dental procedure but they also may help to soothe the mouth and throat which may still be in pain following a dental procedure. Be sure to test it out first as the cold may hurt their mouth more.

Follow Up If Any Issues

If parents or caretakers feel their child is not recovering well from the sedation simply get in touch with the dentist’s office and ask for some information or advice. Perhaps they are just having an adverse reaction or perhaps something more is going on. It is very important to follow up after a dental procedure to ensure that everything is healing correctly.

Elevate The Head

Depending on what kind of procedure was done there may be some pain in the face or in the head. Trying to keep the head elevated is a great way to help fix this issue. Propping their head up on a bunch of pillows is usually the best option as it stops the blood from rushing to their head or face.

These are just a few of the many different things you can do to care for your child after being sedated at the dentist. The most important things is to allow them to get rest and to be aware of any side effects or new symptoms that come on. Keep an eye on them for at least one to two days after the procedure and always follow up with the your dentist if there are any issues or questions.

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