Nitrous Oxide – Santa Clarita Children’s Dental
Nitrous oxide is a form of sedation that allows children who are otherwise too anxious to sit still for dental treatment to receive the care they need. You might know it better by its colloquial name—laughing gas. The dentists at Santa Clarita Children’s Dental in Valencia, California, use nitrous oxide only when a patient truly needs it for their care. If your child has significant anxiety about seeing the dentist or has sensory issues that make it hard for them to readily accept care, you can schedule a consultation to discuss your options and any safety concerns you might have.
What is nitrous oxide? It is a colorless gas that has a smell patients describe as a bit sweet. It interacts with the central nervous system to reduce pain perception and calm anxiety. The gas is fast acting and allows children to remain awake but sedated during their procedures.
Is nitrous oxide safe? Yes, it is safer than most other sedatives. The danger in sedation comes with the impact they have on reflexes, which can cause problems with breathing. However, nitrous oxide does not affect reflexes, making it safe. According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, nitrous oxide has not caused any illnesses or death.
Can my child eat before a procedure with nitrous oxide? We ask that children do not eat for at least two hours before the procedure and that the meal they eat prior to their appointment be light. However, there is no need for fasting.
What can I expect after nitrous oxide use? Children may feel sleepy or silly afterwards. They could experience headaches or nausea as well. We suggest soft foods and liquids only for the first two meals after laughing gas is used to reduce the risk of vomiting. If your child has anxiety about the dentist, special needs, or requires a lengthy procedure, call our office to see if nitrous oxide is a good option for them. For more information go to www.santaclaritachildrensdental.com or call 661-735-1500.
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