What exactly is Nitrous sedation?
A colorless, non-flammable gas, nitrogen oxide is commonly referred to as “laughing gas” or “happy gas.” Gases of this type are widely used as well as sedatives during medical or dental procedures in Littleton. Nitrous sedation eases anxiety and allows patients to relax.
How Is Nitrous Sedation Used?
Our medical professionals at Dakota Ridge Dental use anesthetics, such as nitrous oxide, to promote relaxation before a dental procedure. Laughing gas doesn’t fully sedate the patient. To use nitrous oxide, the dental team at Dakota Ridge Dental covers your mouth and nose with a plastic mask, and you inhale the gas through it.
A nasal hood, which covers a child’s nose but not their mouth, may be used to administer laughing gas to children.
Within a few minutes after inhaling laughing gas, you can feel its effects. Nitrous sedation doesn’t entirely put you to sleep, so you remain aware of everything going on around you. During the procedure, you will likely be able to answer your doctor’s questions and follow their instructions.
Nitrous oxide is generally not associated with any adverse side effects; however, some people may experience a few. Side effects may be related to too much nitrous oxide in the gas mixture or from too high a nitrous oxide concentration.
Among the possible side effects are:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Increased drowsiness
- Excessive sweating or shivering
You may experience headaches if you aren’t administered oxygen for at least five minutes after the nitrous oxide has been turned off. Any remaining gas in the lungs is flushed with oxygen, restoring you to a fully awake and alert state. During nitrous oxide treatment, you should tell the dentist if you feel uncomfortable.
To reduce the risk of nausea and vomiting following nitrous oxide treatment, we recommend that you consume only light meals before your dental appointment. During the three hours following the procedure, they may advise you to refrain from eating heavy meals. Some studies suggest that motor skills and attention may be compromised for 15 minutes after inhaling nitrous oxide, so if you receive nitrous oxide, speak with your dentist regarding driving safety.
How Long Does Nitrous Oxide Last?
The sedative effects of nitrogen oxide become apparent within minutes of inhalation, and they subside within minutes after it’s ceased. Sedation can begin as quickly as 30 seconds or as long as three or four minutes after inhalation. About a third of patients also experience numbness in their cheeks and gums. These effects go away shortly after treatment.
Nonetheless, nitrous oxide is less intrusive than other forms of sedation because it doesn’t put you to sleep. You may prefer laughing gas to traditional anesthesia because of the minimal recovery time.
Nitrous sedation is a helpful way to ease discomfort and anxiety during a dental procedure. Dentists who offer laughing gas can advise if it’s the proper sedation technique for your unique circumstances.
Is Nitrous Oxide Sedation Right for me?
If you experience dental fear or anxiety, sedation with Nitrous Oxide may be a good solution for you. Schedule a consultation with our team today to learn more about the sedation process.