You may have heard the term laughing gas when people mock anyone who laughs a lot. But, laughing gas is actually an oral sedative which is otherwise known by its scientific name of nitrous oxide. It is one of the mildest sedatives used in dentistry. It is used to ease a patient’s nerves and induce a sense of calmness in them. Dentists usually use nitrous oxide on younger patients who tend to make a fuss while being seated in the dental chair.
Why nitrous oxide?
- Nitrous oxide is a mild sedative. It doesn’t have any known side effects and doesn’t require any medication for the patient to recover from the sedation. Meaning, it wears off within a few minutes on its own.
- The drug induces a sense of calmness and makes the most ordinary things seem funny. This makes it easier for the dentist to treat the patient.
- Since nitrous oxide is a gaseous sedative, there is no need to use a syringe to inject it. Hence, the entire process is painless.
- The patient will have to inhale the sedative through a comfortably fitting mask.