All Emergencies - Basic life support principles:

  1. Maintain an airway
  2. Assess breathing
  3. Monitor circulation
Monitor and record all vital signs.


  • Mild - Mental confusion, mild muscle tremor, excessive sweating, patient feels cold, tachycardia (rapid heart beat)
  • Severe - Loss of consciousness



  1. Terminate dental treatment.
  2. Position patient where they are comfortable
  3. A-B-C Airway, Breathing, Circulation - Basic life support, as indicated.
  4. Administer sweets, such as orange juice (4 oz. increments, total 8-12 oz. over 10 minutes)
  5. If patient loses consciousness, call 911 - activate EMS
  6. Position unconscious patient supine
  7. Establish IV access if not already done
  8. Administer 50% dextrose IV - adult 30 ml, pedo - 30 ml.
  9. If unable to establish IV, give glucagon IM.
  10. Once conscious, monitor patient until EMS arrives. Hospitalization usually necessary if patient became unconscious.

Source: Sedation, A Guide to Patient Management by Stanley F. Malamed