Nitrous oxide, also known as "laughing gas" or "sweet air", has been used in dentistry for over 150 years. Nitrous oxide is safe with no side effects; the patient receives 50-70 percent oxygen with no less than 30 percent nitrous oxide. It is a sweet smelling, non-irritating, colorless gas which is inhaled.  The patient is able to breathe on his or her own and remain in control of all bodily functions. After your appointment is over there are no after effects as the gas is immediately exhaled by the lungs.

During treatment, the patient may experience mild amnesia and may fall asleep not remembering all of what happened during their appointment.

There are many advantages to using nitrous oxide:

  • The depth of sedation can be altered at any time to increase or decrease sedation.
  • There is no after effect such as a "hangover"
  • Inhalation sedation is safe with no side effects on your heart or lungs
  • Inhalation sedation is very effective in minimizing gagging
  • It works rapidly taking effect within minutes. In as few as two to three minutes, its relaxation and pain-killing properties develop.

Reasons Not To Use Nitrous Oxide

Though there are no major contraindications to using nitrous oxide, you may not want to use it if you have emphysema, chest problems, multiple sclerosis, a cold, or other difficulties with breathing.

You may want to ask Dr. Sreter for a five-minute trial to see how you feel with this type of sedation method before proceeding.


Robert Sreter

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