People often avoid going to the dentist due to bad childhood memories and unfounded fears. While dentistry has come a long way since the bad old days, dental restorations can still be uncomfortable and painful. Sedation can be useful to help people deal with pain, alleviate anxiety, and overcome their natural fear response. Nitrous oxide is often used during dental procedures, with this powerful substance providing conscious sedation in a way that’s safe and easy to manage.
What is nitrous oxide?
Also known as laughing gas, nitrous oxide is a basic chemical compound that combines a mixture of nitrogen and oxygen. Nitrous oxide has a long history of use in dentistry through a procedure known as relative analgesia. Rather than knocking you out, nitrous oxide enables a conscious sedation that can make you feel warm, relaxed, and safe. While not everyone reacts well to this compound, it provides a number of advantages over other forms of sedation.
Benefits of nitrous oxide
The advantages of nitrous oxide are numerous, with this compound both fast acting and easy to control. While other forms of sedation take a long time to work or have a fixed duration, nitrous oxide can be administered in incremental doses without the need for injections. This compound is administered through a standard oxygen mask and is completely eliminated from the system in three to five minutes. While some people do feel uncomfortable with the effects of nitrous oxide, it continues to provide a safe form of oral sedation for a range of dental procedures
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