Dental Sedation Nursing

 Where can I study? | How do I apply? | Resources| Mar 19 to Mar 21 Exam Schedule

Conscious Sedation is a vital part of modern dentistry enabling the huge number of patients with anxieties and phobias to access care they otherwise couldn’t tolerate.

In the UK this involves the administration of sedative drugs which patients may take orally, inhale or have injected.

As well as removing anxiety these drugs can have many significant side effects which the dental team must be able to recognise and manage in a calm and effective way.


All our qualifications require candidates to achieve a balanced mixture of knowledge and practical skills as well as demonstrating an appropriate professional attitude. To ensure our dental sedation qualifications reflect the areas of practice the dental nurse works in, NEBDN offer the following three options:

  • Certificate in Dental Sedation Nursing
  • Award in Inhalation Sedation Dental Nursing
  • Award in Intravenous Sedation Dental Nursing

All three qualifications are at the same level. The titles ‘Award’ and ‘Certificate’ indicate the difference in the number of learning hours required to complete each qualification. You will need to decide at the start which of the three qualifications is appropriate to their clinical practice. 


Our dental sedation qualifications aim to provide you with:

- a standardised and quality assured learning experience with one of our accredited course providers

- an independent and objective assessment of knowledge meeting the requirements of 'Standards in Conscious Sedation in the Provision of Dental Care

- a portfolio of evidence of practical experience in the form of a detailed Record of Competence including:

  • the confidence and skills to provide the initial management of a medical emergency
  • the ability to effectively monitor sedated patients both clinically and electromechanically.
  • to be able to interpret the results and communicate their findings appropriately
  • to be able to assist during all aspects of treatment under conscious sedation in dental practice
  • a nationally respected qualification.

What are the benefits?

  • Our qualifications are nationally recognised and instantly understood by prospective employers.
  • The NEBDN qualifications are the Intercollegiate Advisory Committee for Sedation in Dentistry (IACSD) benchmark for Dental Sedation Nurses.
  • Our course providers are accredited against our standards ensuring that candidates get a fully supported learning experience and the best preparation for practice.
  • Our syllabus encourages a range of learning styles to suit the individual.
  • Our syllabus is approved by ISACSD.
  • Our formal assessment and Record of Competence are based on the best modern educational practice giving you excellent evidence of your fitness to practice.
  • Accessibility - candidates can select the qualification which best fits their area of practice, reducing barriers to training.
  • Practical skills are assessed on real life activities within the workplace using objective tools to ensure a standardised approach.
  • You will be supported to develop skills which other types of training may not include - for example simple audit, removal of cannulas, dealing with ethical dilemmas.
  • Once qualified, you will become part of the NEBDN Alumni ensuring ongoing support, information and networking opportunities.

Entry requirements

You must:

  • be registered with the General Dental Council or the Irish Dental Council
  • be enrolled with a course provider accredited by NEBDN
  • be sufficiently fluent in written and spoken English to communicate with patients, their relatives, the dental team and other healthcare professionals in the UK
  • be able to meet the work-based clinical requirements of the Record of Competence.

Record of Competence

You are required to complete a work-based Record of Competence (RoC). The requirements for this will vary depending on which qualification the candidate is registered for but, in all cases, there are four sections to the Record of Competence:

  • Practical Competence Assessment Sheets (PCAS)
  • Case Studies
  • Directly Observed Clinical Skills (DOCS) Assessments
  • Supplementary Outcomes.


This is a 90 min written examination composed of two sections:

  • Part A – 45 multiple choice questions (MCQ)
  • Part B – 30 extended matching questions (EMQ).

Examinations are held twice a year in March and September. Examination dates can be found on our website under the Qualifications section.

Award of qualification

In order to be awarded this qualification, you must:

  • complete and satisfy the requirements of the Record of Competence and
  • pass the examination.