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4 Things You Should Know Before Getting Nitrous Oxide Sedation

July 16, 2021

Filed under: Uncategorized — ecodental @ 4:38 pm
man wearing a nitrous oxide mask before a dental procedure

If you’re nervous about an upcoming dental procedure, your dentist may have recommended nitrous oxide sedation to you. Those words might sound nonsensical, but chances are you’ve already heard of nitrous oxide by its common nickname – laughing gas! However, you may not have much of an idea of how it works. Your dentist will be happy to answer any of your questions about nitrous oxide sedation, but here are four basics you need to know first.

1. Nitrous Oxide Won’t Put You to Sleep

While some methods of sedation dentistry will render a patient unconscious, nitrous oxide will not. Instead, you’ll remain awake the entire time that you’re breathing in this colorless, odorless gas through a nasal mask. Waves of relaxation will wash over you, allowing you to receive the treatment your smile needs without any stress or anxiety. During your procedure, you’ll be conscious enough to respond to your dentist’s requests, but your memory of the appointment will most likely be fuzzy afterward.

2. Anxiety Isn’t the Only Reason to Get Nitrous Oxide

Nervousness and fear are common reasons why patients choose nitrous oxide, but it can also help in other situations. For example, it can help children and adults with certain disabilities receive dental care that would be difficult or impossible to provide otherwise. Patients with low pain tolerance, sensitive gag reflex, or difficulty sitting still or holding their mouth open for extended periods of time could also benefit from nitrous oxide.

3. Dentists Have Been Using Nitrous Oxide for Centuries

Dental sedation might seem like a modern invention – and some of the more advanced forms are – but nitrous oxide in particular has been used by dentists for almost 200 years! It was originally a recreational drug, but in the 1840s, an American dentist named Dr. Horace Wells realized that the gas made dental treatments much easier. Since then, nitrous oxide has only become safer and more effective.

4. Nitrous Oxide Is Very Safe When Administered by a Professional

For the vast majority of patients, nitrous oxide is perfectly safe. Your dentist will go over your medical history and medications beforehand to make sure there will be no negative interactions. Throughout the procedure, your vitals will be constantly monitored, and the dosage of the gas can be adjusted as needed. Plus, its effects should wear off soon after the mask is removed, so you can safely resume your normal day after your appointment without any lingering side effects.

Nitrous oxide sedation enables many patients with dental anxiety to maintain healthy smiles without worry. Rest assured that it can make your next dental appointment safe and stress-free!  

About the Authors  

At Eco Dental, we provide nitrous oxide sedation and oral conscious sedation to help our patients receive their care in a relaxing environment. Dr. Cindy Hua has completed advanced training in sedation dentistry, and Dr. Danny Nguyen has more than 20 years of experience in the dental field. If you’re looking for a trusted sedation dentist in Pearland, TX, contact Eco Dental at 713-436-5655.

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