Nitrous Oxide (laughing gas)

nitrous oxide equipmentNitrous Oxide is a sweet-smelling, non-irritating, colorless gas which you can breathe.

Nitrous Oxide has been the the primary means of sedation in dentistry for many years. Nitrous oxide is safe.  The patient receives 50-70% oxygen with no less than 30% nitrous oxide.

The patient is able to breathe on their own and remain in control of all bodily functions.

The patient may experience mild amnesia and may fall asleep, not remembering all of what happened during their appointment.

There are many advantages to using Nitrous Oxide

  • The depth of sedation can be altered at any time to increase or decrease sedation.
  • There is no after effect such as a “hangover”.
  • Inhalation sedation is safe with no side effects on your heart and lungs, etc.
  • Inhalation sedation is very effective in minimizing gagging.
  • It works rapidly as it reaches the brain within 20 seconds. In as little as 2-3 minutes its relaxation and pain killing properties develop.
  • It relaxes and helps eliminate fear, nervousness, and tension.
  • The use of Nitrous Oxide relaxation can enable us to do a greater amount of treatment per visit and therefore reduce the number of visits required to complete your dental care.

If you decide to use Nitrous Oxide, please follow the instructions below:

  • Do not eat or drink anything 3 hours prior to the appointment.
  • Children under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a responsible adult.

 Reasons not to use Nitrous Oxide

You should not utilize Nitrous Oxide if you have been diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).  Although there are no other major contraindications to using nitrous oxide, you may not want to use it if you have emphysema, exotic chest problems, a cold or other breathing difficulties.