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Nitrous Oxide Sedation: Is It Safe?

June 6, 2024

Filed under: Uncategorized — longfamilydental @ 10:08 pm
patient getting nitrous oxide

Nitrous oxide is a colorless, odorless gas that’s commonly known as “laughing gas”. When inhaled, it slows the body’s reaction time and increases the pain threshold, keeping the patient relaxed yet alert enough to communicate with the dentist. It’s a fast-acting sedative with effects that fade shortly after the treatment ends, making it one of the safest forms of dental sedation. Read on to learn more about how nitrous oxide is used, its safety profile, and potential side effects.

What Is Nitrous Oxide Sedation?

Typically, nitrous oxide sedation is administered to patients with mild dental anxiety. The gas is a mixture of oxygen and nitrous oxide, delivered via a nose mask attached to a hose. Within minutes, you will feel calm and relaxed while maintaining the ability to speak, move, and respond to the dentist. Once the gas supply is stopped, the effects fade quickly. This allows patients to drive themselves home and resume their daily activities shortly after the procedure.

How Safe is Nitrous Oxide?

Nitrous oxide can be dangerous when used recreationally, but it’s considered extremely safe under the supervision of a trained dental professional. It’s non-addictive and has no known long-term side effects. However, it’s not recommended for patients with certain medical conditions, such as chronic pulmonary disease. Be sure to consult with your dentist to determine if nitrous oxide is suitable for your specific needs.

What Are Some Possible Side Effects of Nitrous Oxide?

The good news is that it’s rare for patients to experience negative reactions. In fact, the few that encounter short-term side effects are often due to inhaling the gas too quickly during treatment. Some of these side effects include dizziness, fatigue, shivering, sweating, nausea, or vomiting. In rare instances, a patient may have an allergic reaction. Seek immediate medical help if you experience reactions like a fever, chills, hives, wheezing, or difficulty breathing.

Although nitrous oxide is a popular type of dental sedation, it may not be right for everyone. During your consultation, be sure to discuss your medical history and concerns with your dentist to determine if this sedative is right for you.

About the Practice

Long Family Dental is a family-owned practice that has been serving the residents of Cleburne and Midlothian for over 40 years. Led by Drs. Robert and Chris Long, who continue their father’s legacy, they work together to enhance and restore smiles. We strive to provide the best care possible by using the latest dental technology and techniques. If you have any questions about nitrous oxide sedation or want to know if it’s right for you, don’t hesitate to give us a call for more information. You can visit our website or call (817) 760-2536 to make an appointment.

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