Nitrous Oxide/ Sedation
This is commonly referred to as “laughing gas”. It is administered via a nasal mask and is breathed through your nose. It has a rapid onset (2-3 minutes) and since it is a gas, there are no effects after the gas is stopped at the end of the procedure. Patients are therefore able to function normally without any side effects; including driving after their dental procedure. This is a wonderful level of sedation for those patients who have a slight fear of dentistry or anxiety about having a dental injection. The typical experience that patients feel is an “enjoyable buzz” that lessens their anxiety.
We also offer oral sedation where the patient is given a sedative the night before, typically diazepam (Valium), to ensure a good night’s sleep. Also, a sedative-hypnotic drug, typically triazolam (Halcion) or medazolam (Versed), one hour before their dental appointment. These drugs have a sedative effect that makes it a requirement for patients to have an escort to and from their dental appointment. Oral sedation works well for patients that have a mild to moderate level of fear and anxiety.