Nitrous Oxide has been the primary method of sedation in dentistry for many years. It is a sweet-smelling, non-irritating, colorless gas that you breathe in. Nitrous oxide is safe; patients breathe on their own and remain in control of all bodily functions. They may experience mild amnesia or fall asleep, not remembering all of what happened during their appointment.
Advantages of Nitrous Oxide
- The depth of sedation can be increased or decreased at any time.
- There is no after-effect such as a “hangover”.
- There are no side effects on your heart and lungs, etc.
- It is very effective in minimizing gagging.
- It works rapidly; relaxation and painlessness occur in as little as 2-3 minutes.
Reasons to not use Nitrous Oxide
You should not utilize Nitrous Oxide if you have been diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Though there are no other major contraindications to using nitrous oxide, you may not want to use it if you have emphysema, exotic chest problems, M.S., a cold or other difficulties with breathing.
You might want to ask for a “5 minute trial” to see how you feel with this type of sedation method before proceeding.