What Is Laughing Gas?
Laughing gas has been used for hundreds of years. Originally, it was only used as an anesthetic. But today, it is used at lower dosages as a sedative that can:
- Make you feel happy.
- Make you laugh and feel euphoric.
- Keep you relaxed.
Basically, it slows your body and mind just enough to make you comfortable in situations where you were tense before, such as at the dentist’s office. It doesn’t put you to sleep. You’ll be fully aware of everything and be able to talk and follow instructions, but you’ll also be calm and relaxed.
To use laughing gas, you’ll wear a comfortable mask over your nose and mouth. You’ll breathe normally and easily, and will quickly feel the calming effects. After the appointment, it will leave your system in minutes. You’ll even be able to drive yourself home, if you’d like.
Laughing gas is safe when monitored by a qualified professional. Plus, 95% of patients don’t experience side effects—and there are no long-term downsides of using it only occasionally. Only 5% of patients have any minor effects such as nausea or headaches from it.
Oral Conscious Sedation: Quick and Easy
Using oral conscious sedation may be even easier than laughing gas! All it takes is a pill. We’ll prescribe a sedative to you, which you can swallow a certain amount of time before your appointment.
You’ll need someone to drive you here and then take you home afterwards. That’s because your prescription will/may:
- Make you drowsy.
- Put you in a deep state of relaxation.
- Make you slur your words.
- Cause you to forget the procedure afterwards.
If you have anxiety about dental procedures, sedation dentistry is a great way to lower your anxiety. It can even get rid of minor pain and sensitivity.
But you may also wonder about the sedation process itself. Is it safe? Are the substances well researched? Will you stay awake? We’re here to answer all your questions.
How We Keep You Safe
First, you can feel confident in the knowledge that Dr. Stubbs is qualified to use sedation, and has plenty of experience administering it. We will also examine your medical history to determine the type of sedation that is right for you. We’ll choose sedation that is safe with your other medications, appropriate for your age, and more.
We use sedation that is FDA-approved and thoroughly tested. Feel free to ask all the questions you need to before you consent to the sedation type we recommend.
Finally, during the procedure itself, we’ll watch your vital signs to make sure you’re stable; for example, the team may monitor your blood pressure and heart rate. This is to ensure both that you’re safe and that you’re comfortable.
This technique is designed to keep you awake during the procedure so that you can still follow instructions. But some patients still forget some or all of the procedure later.
Before you use oral sedation, we’ll examine your medical history and other prescriptions, adjusting the prescription to make it safe for you. Plus, we only use drugs that have been carefully tested for many years and FDA-approved.
For the highest level of sedation, we can use IV sedation, which administers the medication directly into a vein. This technique will make you:
- Extremely relaxed.
- Conscious enough to follow instructions.
- More comfortable during procedures, especially if you have dental sensitivity.
- Potentially forget the details of your procedure.
If laughing gas or oral sedation are not quite enough for you, IV sedation can help you get through any type of procedure. You’ll be carefully monitored for any type of complication. Keep in mind that it takes time to fully recover from this deeper sedation.
Get the Sedation Dentistry You Need
If you stay comfortable during dental services, you’re more likely to return and get the dental work that will keep you healthy. This will also help to lower your overall anxiety, because it can help you avoid complications like dental cavities and extractions.
If you have dental anxiety or sensitivity, ask your dentist or endodontist about sedation dentistry. We’ll be happy to find the right level of safe sedation for you, which will improve your health and wellbeing. Contact us today.