Your Dentist in Falls Church, VA Answers Nitrous Oxide Sedation FAQs

Nitrous Oxide or N20, otherwise known as laughing gas, is non-irritating and non-flammable gas that is colorless and has a slightly sweet smell to it. It is not easily absorbed by the blood, which means that only a small amount is needed for it to have a sedative effect on a patient. It is administered along with oxygen and typically takes no more than 5 minutes for it to have an effect. 
Can I have an allergic reaction to Nitrous Oxide?
To date, there has never been even a single documented case of any allergic reactions to nitrous oxide. So, the short answer is: No.
What will I feel while I am sedated with N20?
There are a few things that most patients report while being sedated with nitrous oxide. A few common feelings are numbness or tingling in the hands or feet, the feeling of being afloat, the feeling of being very heavy, a brief increase in heart rate, the feeling of being warm and relaxed or just feeling happy.
Can I drive after being on Nitrous Oxide?
When N20 is breathed in, it will have an effect. However, it is not absorbed into your bloodstream and when you exhale, there is no more left in your body. Your dentist will have you breathe pure oxygen for a few minutes after the procedure and the staff will ensure that you feel comfortable and back to normal before leaving the office.
What are the side effects of nitrous oxide?
While nitrous oxide is a safe form of sedation, there are some potential side effects. These may include nausea, indigestion, dizziness or vomiting, anxiety or agitation. Some patients may even experience slurred speech or minor hallucinations. If you are having any of these side effects, your dentist will simply turn off the nitrous oxide and will let you breathe oxygen for a few minutes until you feel normal again. 
What are the advantages of using nitrous oxide sedation?
One of the biggest advantages of using nitrous oxide sedation is that it only takes a few minutes for it to have a calming and relaxing effect on the patient. This almost instantly solves any anxiety or nervousness that the patient may have about the procedure. It also works as a mild analgesic (or painkiller) and patients are still able to drive themselves homes after their procedure.
If you have any questions for your dentist in Falls Church VA and would like to learn more, or schedule an appointment, call Peyser Dentistry at (703) 893-3333 today.
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