The Woodlands Dental Group:
Ragsdale Judith A DDS
1001 Medical Plaza Dr #350, Spring, TX 77380
Dr. Blackburn and Dr. Ragsdale have trained extensively to be able to offer a little better living through chemistry to those children who need a little or a lot of help to be able to enjoy their dental experience. They both attended top residencies in Pediatric Dentistry (Dr. Blackburn at Yale University and Dr. Ragsdale at Baylor University) and they attend sedation review and training courses with simulations every other year in order to bring the best techniques for safe, effective sedation to their dental family. Key members of the team who help during the sedations also attend review courses to make sure the whole team is current and cutting edge. Additionally, Growing Great Grins has a codified emergency management protocol which we review as a team with quarterly emergency preparedness simulations and drills.
NOT UNLESS YOU ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO: THE MINIMAL APPROACH
The Growing Great Grins philosophy of conservative dentistry extends also to our approach to sedation. At your child’s treatment planning visit, Dr. Blackburn or Dr. Ragsdale will carefully evaluate your child – attempt to build a rapport with them, and do some exercises to get a sense of their personality and their ability to work with the team. Then they will talk to you to get a sense of how your child responds to potentially stressful situations like getting their hair cut, going to the doctor, getting immunizations, etc. After all of this information gathering, they will present the options they think give your child the best chance to have a positive, even fun experience in the operatory, then let your family choose what options makes the most sense to you.
SAFETY FIRST: SPECIALIZED TRAINING AND CONSTANT REFRESHING
Even though we have extensive experience with sedating children and do it on a daily basis, we take each sedation very seriously. We understand what a big decision it is to trust your child to our team for a sedation. We strive to be constantly worthy of that trust. Dr. Blackburn and Dr. Ragsdale close the office to be able to attend pediatric sedation CE courses every other year. This lets them refresh their knowledge, hear the latest techniques and research regarding sedation, and get new ideas for improving office procedures and protocols.
We hope to never have an emergency in our office, but we are prepared for it if we have one. Dr. Blackburn and Dr. Ragsdale attend pediatric dental simulation courses to gain practice in managing emergencies. We have protocols in place so that our entire team understands exactly what to do if an emergency happens. We run drills quarterly to refresh our knowledge and skills so that the entire team is ready to spring into action if any emergency arises.
GIGGLY GAS: NITROUS OXIDE
The most minimal level of sedation is nitrous oxide, more commonly known as laughing gas. This works extremely well for the majority of our patients. It is the best choice for those patients who are mature and cooperative but just a little anxious. It can also help ease discomfort, decrease the natural gag reflex, and allow them have a lot of fun!
OUR SPECIAL JUICE: ORAL SEDATION
This is the next level of sedation: minimal-to-moderate. Your child does not go to sleep. Rather, they just appear more relaxed, and have a greatly increased attention span. As your child will not be asleep, we still bring out our whole fun dog-and-pony show to help them have a great experience. This level of sedation is perfect for the anxious child who really wants to cooperate but just cannot quite do it.
Growing Great Grins differs from many other pediatric dentists in the agents that we use. We use a cocktail of two medications which we believe give a safe and more effective sedation result. To hear more about the agents please feel free to call and ask to talk to the doctors. They may not be able to come to the phone, but they would be happy to call you back to discuss it more in depth.
We believe in safety above everything else, so we do not offer this option to children under the age of 3 or those with health challenges. For more information please feel free to call our office. We love to talk shop!
SLEEP DENTISTRY: IV SEDATION
For those children who are either too young or too anxious for oral sedation and need a little more help, we offer IV sedation. To make this a safe and effective experience, we bring a dental anesthesiologist into our office and have him administer and monitor the sedation. We work with the pre-eminent dental anesthesiologists in Houston. We trust them to sedate our own children – there really is no higher recommendation. During the IV sedation appointment we will complete any and all treatment your child needs in that one visit.
For those children whose tender age, health, or behavioral challenges make in-office treatment impossible, we are proud to partner with Texas Children’s Hospital to offer hospital dentistry. In this procedure your child will be put under general anesthesia in the care of a full hospital anesthesia team. Then we will complete any and all dental treatment your child may need.