What is Nitrous Oxide?

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As comfortable as we try to make our patients, there are always those that just fear the dental chair. It could be the needles, the drills, or the noises. If your child is one of our patients that just dreads coming in, we may have a solution for you.

What is Nitrous Sedation?

Nitrous Oxide – better known as laughing gas – is an effective sedative that is widely utilized in dentistry to help relax patients during a procedure. The gas is administered through a mask placed over the nose of the patient. After 30 seconds to 5 minutes of breathing, the your child will begin to feel a pleasant level of sedation. In some children, the cheeks and gums will begin to feel numb.

After the gas has been adjusted to the appropriate dose and your child is relaxed and sedated, we proceed with treatment.

Through the entire process, your child will be monitored by our specially trained team of professionals.

After treatment is completed, your child is given pure oxygen to breathe for about five minutes. During this time, the effects of sedation are usually reversed.

Is Nitrous Sedation right for my child?

Nitrous oxide is great for patients who:

  • Have avoided dental treatment due to nervousness or fear
  • Have difficulty getting numb through “Freezing”
  • Have extremely sensitive teeth
  • Are afraid of needles, drills, or other treatments

What Are the Side Effects of Nitrous Sedation?

Nitrous oxide has a few side effects. In some patients, high doses can cause nausea and approximately 10 percent of patients are not affected by it. Patients who have blocked nasal passages cannot use laughing gas effectively.

Nitrous oxide is not necessarily a good fit for every patient. As your child’s dentists, we will provide a screening consultation before we go ahead with this option.

Surveys have shown that the number one reason people avoid the dentist is fear. While skipping a dentist trip may be good for your nerves, it can have quite a negative effect on your child’s oral health.

If your child has trouble visiting us, please be sure to ask us about nitrous oxide the next time you are in our office!

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