Nitrous Oxide:  What to Know

What is Nitrous Oxide?

A colorless, sweet smelling gas used to ease anxiety and pain.  It's completely safe and very common in dentistry.  It is not a form of sedation, your child will be conscious during their treatment.  It's used in addition to a topical numbing agent & local anesthetic.

How is it administered?

The equipment used for delivering the "laughing gas" is quite simple.  The Nitrous Oxide is fed through a tube which is attached to a small nasal mask.  The nasal mask fits directly over your child's nose and all they need to do is breathe deeply to experience the effects of the Nitrous Oxide.  

How will it help my child?

It reduces anxiety, helps enhance communication and cooperation, raises the pain threshold, increases tolerance for longer appointments and reduces gagging. 

Are there any disadvantages to using Nitrous Oxide?

While there are no true disadvantages to using Nitrous Oxide, sometimes people who have not tried it before are apprehensive about what to expect.  If your child is prone to nausea or queasiness, it's a good idea to have a light meal the morning of their appointment.  Sometimes avoiding dairy products the morning of your child's appointment is another way to help avoid the possibility of nausea with the use of Nitrous Oxide. 

Are there any "after effects"?

No.  Once your child's treatment is finished, they'll breathe 100% pure Oxygen to flush the Nitrous Oxide from their system.  They should be perfectly fine and able to return to normal activities upon completion of their appointment. 

How much is Nitrous Oxide and is it covered by my insurance?

Most insurance carriers do not cover the use of Nitrous Oxide; therefore, you will be responsible for the cost.  It will be due at checkout the day of your child's appointment.  Feel free to call our office or see a member of our front desk staff for fee information. 

** If you or your child have additional questions about Nitrous Oxide, please call our office and we'd be happy to talk with you further about the numerous benefits of using laughing gas at your child's next appointment.