What Is Laughing Gas?
Nitrous oxide or “laughing gas” is a safe and odorless anti-anxiety agent used to induce mild sedation and relaxation in patients who experience dental anxiety or phobia. Laughing gas is one of the safest and commonly used sedation methods in restorative and cosmetic dentistry procedures. It is non-allergenic and non-irritating, and its effects wear off within a few minutes.
When laughing gas is administered, the patient remains in control of their breathing and bodily functions; however, they may experience mild amnesia afterward.
How Does It Work?
Nitrous oxide is an anesthetic used to keep patients relaxed and calm during a dental procedure. It is administered through a nasal hood.
Our doctors at Kane and Kerper Family and Cosmetic Dentistry place the nasal hood over your nose and mouth during the procedure and ask you to breathe normally while maintaining the depth of sedation. The gas reaches the brain in 20 seconds and starts suppressing pain receptors—inducing sedation—within 2-3 minutes.
Benefits of Laughing Gas
- Using nitrous oxide allows the maintenance of different levels of sedation. The doctor can alter the depth of sedation at any time.
- The effects are reversible, and there are no after-effects.
- Inhaling laughing gas is one of the safest methods of sedation with no side effects on the lungs or the heart, etc.
- Inhalation sedation minimizes gagging.
- It works fast and produces a feeling of relaxation and sedation within 2-3 minutes.
When Should You Not Use Laughing Gas?
Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases should not opt for laughing gas sedation. Although laughing gas is safe and has no adverse effects on the heart or lungs, patients with breathing difficulties, chest problems, and emphysema should avoid it. You can request a 5-minute trial to experience the effects of laughing gas before proceeding with the procedure.