Patient anxiety is a common concern when it comes to visiting the dentist. We understand that for many of our patients, it can be a stressful experience not only during examinations but also procedures. As patient comfort is extremely important to us, we have explored many options and tools to help alleviate discomfort and anxiety. Nitrous Oxide, also known as laughing gas, is one of the leading tools in dental offices that help to reduce patient anxiety.
What is Nitrous Oxide?
Nitrous Oxide, or laughing gas, is a safe and effective form of conscious sedation that can be used on both adults and children to help them feel relaxed and at ease during dental procedures. It is one of the safest sedatives used and is well-tolerated by patients.
This option is typically recommended to patients with high levels of anxiety and fear of the dentist or those who may have difficulty remaining still during procedures. One of the benefits of using Nitrous Oxide is that dentists can carefully control the dose and timing, making it completely adjustable and reversible depending on the patient’s needs. It is also non-allergenic.
Nitrous Oxide is a form of conscious sedation as mentioned above, so the patient remains fully conscious and maintains all-natural reflexes and is capable of responding to instruction during the procedure.
Nitrous Oxide is mixed with oxygen and administered through a fitted mask placed over the patient’s nose. The effects are almost immediate, and a faint sweet aroma may be experienced as a general sense of relaxation.
At the end of the procedure, the effects will wear off after gas flow has ceased. Adult patients will be able to drive after being monitored for a brief observation period. Children will also be monitored after a procedure before being able to return to their normal routine.
Preparing for an appointment
Our staff will provide instructions before and after treatment. Patients are advised to have little to no food consumption prior to the visit to prevent nausea and vomiting during treatment.
It is important to notify your dentist of any respiratory conditions you or your child may have that could limit the effectiveness of the gas, such as a stuffy nose. Any changes in medication or medical history since your last visit should also be noted.
Nitrous Oxide is a safe and effective means of relieving pain and anxiety during dental treatment. It has helped many patients have a comfortable and positive experience. For more information on Nitrous Oxide and to see if it may be right for you, contact Fairbanks Family Dental Care today.