Nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas, is a popular dental sedation technique. It’s probably one of the most widely used sedation techniques. Nitrous oxide or laughing gas lowers anxiety for the patient during dental treatments. But what exactly is nitrous oxide, and how does it reduce anxiety during dental treatments?
Laughing gas is a colorless, odorless chemical composed of two nitrogen molecules and one oxygen molecule. Although it has no taste, some patients have described nitrous oxide as having a metallic flavor, while others describe it as sweet.
Are you concerned about your kid’s dental appointment? Well, your kid needs to be still for a lengthy operation. You can’t stop gagging when the dentist inserts instruments in your mouth. All of these events might necessitate laughing gas to ensure a successful dental visit. But what exactly is laughing gas, and how does it work? Let’s learn from this post.
What Is The Purpose Of Laughing Gas?
Laughing gas is a sedative agent used to calm and relax patients who are anxious about dental procedures. It works by depressing the central nervous system, which decreases anxiety and produces a state of relaxation.
Generally, laughing gas sedation is used for younger patients or those who are claustrophobic. There are several ways in which it can be administered. It can be directly inhaled from a specialty inhaler or a mask placed over the mouth and nose. It can also be administered through an intravenous line (IV) or an intramuscular injection.
What Does Laughing Gas Do?
Nitrous oxide, commonly known as laughing gas, is a mild sedative that effectively manages pain and anxiety during dental treatment. The colorless and odorless nitrous oxide is mixed with oxygen and breathed through a small face mask over the nose. Patients are instructed to breathe normally while under the influence of the gas, which should take effect within minutes.
Contrary to its name, laughter gas does not always make you laugh. Nitrous oxide lowers your nervous system speed to make you feel less inhibited. You might feel dizzy, tingly, or even paralyzed in your arms or legs. Finally, throughout the process, you should remain calm and comfortable. You could even chuckle on occasion.
What Are The Benefits Of Laughing Gas?
Common benefits include:
Relaxation: The gas is a mild sedative that makes patients feel less nervous.
Anxiety management: Patients might become anxious before the dental appointment. Sometimes, they might even avoid having dental work done because of fear. Under the influence of the gas, patients feel less inhibited and are thus more likely to go through with their dental treatments without worries or fears.
Prevention of pain: Nitrous oxide produces a relaxing effect in patients, blocking discomfort caused by pain.
Decreased recovery time: After a dental procedure, laughing gas can help patients recover quickly from the treatment.
How Long Does It Take To Work?
It takes around 5 minutes for the gas to start working. You mustn’t hold your breath while inhaling the gas, which could lead to complications. It is, therefore, best if you take slow breaths during the treatment.
Nausea and vomiting may occur when breathing in nitrous oxide – especially for children. Make sure you avoid drinking or eating anything for an hour before the treatment.
What Are The Side Effects Of Laughing Gas?
Nausea, dizziness, and euphoria are possible side effects of laughing gas. These are not serious and usually subsided after a few minutes. However, if vomiting occurs for more than 30 seconds, it can be a sign of problems with your heart.
How Safe Is Laughing Gas?
Laughing gas is generally considered a very safe sedative agent when used appropriately. It can be used in healthy patients of any age, and it is not deemed to be dangerous or toxic in any way.
The most common side effect of Nitrous oxide sedation is a post-dental “hangover” or “sting” that lasts for 24 hours. This side effect affects about one out of five people who breathe the gas, but it is less likely to occur with higher doses of the gas used to treat patients with claustrophobia.
These may occur if high doses of the gas are administered to patients with a weak heart or other health problems. They might also occur in people who have low blood pressure or a history of fainting from other causes.
Nitrous Oxide Sedation Technique For Children
Is nitrous oxide as safe for children as it is for adults? The AAPD claims that laughing gas is completely acceptable to youngsters and may be administered quickly. Many youngsters like using the gas and report feeling a tingling or warming sensation.
The laughing gas can help speed up procedures that aren’t particularly uncomfortable but need the kid to stay still for extended periods. On the other hand, some children may feel sick or have difficulty wearing the mask. Dental treatment may necessitate sedation, so talk with your child’s dentist about it beforehand.
Is Laughing Gas Safe For Children?
The gas is safe for children when used under the supervision of a dentist. It can help reduce anxiety and make the child feel more comfortable during dental treatment. The gas is not considered to be dangerous or toxic in any way.
The laughing gas can help speed up procedures that aren’t particularly uncomfortable but need the kid to stay still for extended periods. On the other hand, some children may feel sick or have difficulty wearing the mask.
Visit Dr. Yasmin Today
If your kid is scared of dental treatments, don’t worry, we have got you covered. At Dr. Yasmin, we offer laughing gas sedation to help your child relax and have a successful dental visit at our clinic.
We also offer other forms of sedation for kids, such as oral conscious sedation and general anesthesia. So whether your child is scared of the dentist or needs extensive dental work done, we can provide the perfect form of sedation to make the experience more comfortable.
Book an appointment with us today, and let us help your child have a positive dental experience!