Laughing Gas Q & A

What is laughing gas/nitrous oxide?

Laughing gas is a combination of two gases — nitrous oxide and oxygen — that’s administered to your child through a fitted mask and tubing. The gas combination relaxes your child and creates a sense of positive wellbeing.

In fact, some people experience a feeling of euphoria or giddiness, which is why nitrous oxide is called laughing gas. Laughing gas is also known to increase pain tolerance, which makes it a useful option in sedation dentistry.

Is laughing gas safe?

Laughing gas is one of the most reliable forms of sedation available. Here are some of its benefits:

  • It’s fast acting and well-tolerated

  • It’s easily adjusted throughout the procedure

  • It wears off quickly when the mask is removed

In fact, children under the influence of laughing gas are fully conscious, maintaining all their natural reflexes, and they’re able to answer questions and understand instructions.

The dentists at Upper East Pediatric Dentistry tailor the dosage of the nitrous oxide specifically to your child to ensure maximum safety and effectiveness.

How should I prepare my child for laughing gas?

Your child shouldn’t eat for at least two hours before the appointment because laughing gas can occasionally cause nausea or vomiting in patients with a full stomach. Also, make sure the dentist is aware in advance of any medications or supplements your child is taking in case they might interfere with the gas.

When should I consider an alternative?

If your child has any respiratory conditions that make breathing through the nose difficult, be sure to discuss those conditions with the dentist in advance.

Also, if your child has an intense anxiety or aversion to wearing the nasal mask, the team at Upper East Pediatric Dentistry explores other sedation options with you to find one that’s more appropriate.

The goal at Upper East Pediatric Dentistry is the safety and comfort of its young patients, and they work with you to find the most effective option for your child. To learn more, call or book an appointment online.