Does the thought of visiting a dentist make your entire body tense with fear? Would you rather endure the agony of a toothache than go to a dentist? For people who avoid dentists, sedation dentistry may take away some of their anxiety. Sedation can be used for everything from invasive procedures to a simple tooth cleaning.
Nitrous oxide is a safe and effective sedative agent that is mixed with oxygen and inhaled through a small mask that fits over your nose to help you relax. Nitrous oxide, sometimes called “laughing gas,” is one option your dentist may offer to help make you more comfortable during certain procedures. It is not intended to put you to sleep. You will be able to hear and respond to any requests or directions the dentist may have. Ultimately, you should feel calm and comfortable. The effects of nitrous oxide wear off soon after the mask is removed. You may be able to drive yourself home after the procedure.