For some patients, laughing gas can ease the anxiety associated with dental procedures. Varying levels of anxiety can occur if a patient is in pain or is remembering bad experiences from the past. Either way, it can make a trip to the dentist a stressful event.
Nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas, is a temporary relaxant that can help ease your stress. It is not an anesthesia so it will not make you “sleep.” In fact, the effects of laughing gas wear off shortly after you stop receiving it. As a result, it is safe for you to drive home within a few minutes after your treatment is completed.
What to expect
Laughing gas is inhaled from a small mask placed over the nose. Within a few minutes, you will start to feel relaxed and possibly a little giddy or euphoric. A heaviness or tingling feeling might be noticeable in the legs or arms. Otherwise, you will be able to perform simple commands such as pointing or nodding in agreement.
Ideally, laughing gas will make you comfortable enough to receive your dental treatment. Simply ask us if you would like to know if laughing gas is appropriate for you. Typically, laughing gas is safe to use and its levels are easily adjusted to ensure your maximum comfort.
A little history
In the early 1800s, Dr. Horace Wells first used nitrous oxide in dentistry. Since then, it has been regarded as a safe relaxation method. Attempting to use laughing gas outside of a medical setting is a different story. People should never attempt to use nitrous oxide on their own as it could lead to serious injuries – and that is no laughing matter.
ABOUT YOUR SOUTHLAKE DENTISTS:
As a native Texan, Gregory Wright, DDS, opened his private practice in Southlake, TX in 1992. He and Dr. Victoria Heron are happily accepting new patients from Southlake, Grapevine, Keller, Trophy Club, Colleyville, and all surrounding communities. To learn more, call our office today at (817) 481-7999.