Is Nitrous Oxide Safe for Children?
Yes, it is! In fact, our dentists typically prefer to administer nitrous oxide to children compared to other deeper levels of sedation. This is because it has an excellent safety profile.
Why Are Patients Given Oxygen After Nitrous Oxide?
It is common to administer 100% oxygen to patients once they are no longer breathing in nitrous oxide. The oxygen therapy eliminates any lingering nitrous oxide in the lungs, while helping patients become more alert. The oxygen therapy also prevents headaches, which can sometimes be caused by nitrous oxide.
Who Shouldn’t Receive Nitrous Oxide?
Although nitrous oxide is safe for most people, we are always sure to review your health history before proceeding with treatment under nitrous oxide. Typically, nitrous oxide is not recommended for women in their first trimester of pregnancy. Also, the use of nitrous oxide is generally contraindicated for patients who may have: COPD, methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase deficiency, cobalamin deficiency, or a history of substance abuse.
Should I Eat Before Receiving Nitrous Oxide?
If you know that you are going to be receiving nitrous oxide, you can feel free to have a light meal a few hours before treatment. However, some patients find they will become nauseous as a result of the nitrous oxide. In these cases, we advise to avoid eating too much food before treatment, so you don’t become sick. If you or your child has never had nitrous oxide before, refrain from eating prior to treatment until you know if it will make you feel nauseous.