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4 year old having dental caries. Advised to go for a root canal treatment. How is the surgery and anesthesia performed?

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I need some information on dental surgery.My 4 year old daughter has nursing caries.We approached a pediatric dentist.She said we need to do root canal and one teeth extraction as there is lot of problem in her teeth.She had advised to do this under General anesthesia as the work is extensive and she won't co-operate under normal sedation. She says if we ignore the situation then the present teeth will fall and the infection will spread to the new adult teeth which will come at a later stage. I am extremely worried as to how she will cope the entire process. Before administering anesthesia, I heared they insert catheter in the forehand.How much pain she will have to undergo.Can you explain the entire process before anaesthesia is given?My daughter is very weak in stature and I am really depressed by the thoughts of how much pain she will have before the surgery begins.Please advise.
Posted Tue, 8 May 2012 in Child Health
Answered by Dr. Shainaz Arif Kaware 1 hour later

Thanks for your query.

I understand your concerns for your daughter in view of her being posted for a dental procedure and the use of anaesthesia.

Normally in such cases your dentist may plan to give her a short general anesthesia which will be administered by an intravenous injection using a small, sterilized intravenous (IV) catheter/canula. IV catheter is actually small plastic catheter with a regular needle inside. The needle is used for pricking of the skin and once it is inside a vein the needle is removed and the plastic catheter is in place.
This is a picture of normally used IV catheter: WWW.WWWW.WW WWW.WWWW.WW jpg&imgrefurl= WWW.WWWW.WW html&h=250&w=250&sz=12&tbnid=iURSfYjkgFDSjM:&tbnh=90&tbnw=90&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dintravenous%2Bcannula%26tbm%3Disch%26tbo%3Du&zoom=1&q=intravenous+cannula&docid=0RYe4INAf2Yy0M&hl=en&sa=X&ei=InYvT87qNZGJrAeolqTQDA&sqi=2&ved=0CF8Q9QEwBQ&dur=1204

The pain will be similar to any normally injection. The pain perceived though is not severe would vary depending on the tolerance of each kid. We know that children at the age of 4 usually do not tolerate needle prick pains; but do not worry she will be alright after a while.
The short anaesthesia will make your daughter sleep almost immediately and the she wouldn’t feel rest of the procedure. The effects of the anaethesia last according to the drug used - normally, it wouldn’t be not more than 2-4 hours.

I understand that you would be apprehensive like any normal parent. But do not worry, she should be alright under care of able your doctors.

I hope this answer destresses you. Feel free to contact me should you have any more apprehensions. I will gladly help you further.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: 4 year old having dental caries. Advised to go for a root canal treatment. How is the surgery and anesthesia performed? 1 hour later
Thanks for the reply.Once admitted to the hospital, first they will insert the saline catheter and then again they will give injection?Means she will be pricked 2 times at 2 different spots? One for catheter administration and the other injection for General anesthesia?Is this the exact procedure or she will receive the injection through the round circle catheter?Please advise
Answered by Dr. Shainaz Arif Kaware 49 minutes later

Thanks again.

The prick is going to be only once. The catheter stays in the vein. Both saline and anaesthesia medications will be given through the same catheter.

Your daughter will have to go through it to treat the painful dental.

As I mentioned in my previous response, worry no more. She would be fine under the hands of your able doctors.

Hope this suffices to alleviate your apprehensions. Do accept the answer if you do not have any further queries. Yet, I am available to guide you through any other concerns that you might have.

Take care and Regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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