Conscious Sedation in Dentistry – guideline updated


The Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Programme (SDCEP) has recently published its updated guidance on conscious sedation in dentistry. The guideline was initially published in 2006.

The aim of the guidance is to

to promote good clinical practice through recommendations for the provision of conscious sedation in dentistry that is both safe and effective. It is not a recipe book for sedation and therefore does not include details of drug dosages. Similarly, adequate pain control is an important element of good dental practice but is outside the remit of this guidance.

The guidance contains recommendations regarding

  •  Referral
  • Assessment and Record Keeping
  • Environment and Facilities
  • Conscious Sedation Techniques
  • Aftercare

The full guideline is free to download from the SDCEP website


Conscious sedation in Dentistry, Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Programme (SDCEP). Dundee 2012

NICE Clinical guideline 112. Sedation in children and young people: Sedation for diagnostic and therapeutic procedures in children and young people.  Dec 2010







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Derek Richards

Derek Richards is a specialist in dental public health, Director of the Centre for Evidence-Based Dentistry and Specialist Advisor to the Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Programme (SDCEP) Development Team. A former editor of the Evidence-Based Dentistry Journal and chief blogger for the Dental Elf website until December 2023. Derek has been involved with a wide range of evidence-based initiatives both nationally and internationally since 1994. Derek retired from the NHS in 2019 remaining as a part-time senior lecturer at Dundee Dental School until the end of 2023.

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