Nitrous Oxide

What is Nitrous Oxide?

Nitrous is a blend of two gases: Oxygen and Nitrous Oxide. It is inhaled through a small mask that is worn on your nose.

How will my child feel breathing in the Nitrous?

The sensation that your child feels is a sense of euphoria or giddiness, and therefore, it is often called “laughing gas”. This is a short acting sensation and is eliminated after breathing only oxygen for a short time and has no lingering effects.

Studies have shown that it is perhaps one of the most safest and effective methods reducing anxiety and discomfort during dental procedures. Nitrous is well tolerated, non-addictive; and has a rapid onset and is easily reversible. Nitrous can be adjusted to various levels and does not create any allergic reactions.

The child remains fully conscious and is able to verbally respond to questions or requests. Nitrous can be used in combination with other sedative medications.

Are there any special instructions for the use of nitrous oxide?

  1. It is important to refrain from eating or drinking four hours prior to the appointment. (Occasionally, nausea or vomiting occurs when the child has a full stomach.)
  2. Inform your pediatric dentist of any breathing difficulties or respiratory conditions that may limit the effectiveness of the Nitrous.
  3. Tell your pediatric dentist if your child is taking any medication the day of the appointment.

Will nitrous oxide work for all children?

All children are not alike; every procedure is tailored to your child as an individual. Children who have severe anxiety, nasal congestion, or discomfort wearing a nasal mask, may not feel the full effectiveness of the nitrous. Pediatric dentists have comprehensive specialty training and can offer other sedation methods that are right for your child.

For more information, please visit: The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry.