Inhalation Sedation

Nitrous Oxide (Laughing Gas)

This is the mildest form of sedation. It consists of a mix of nitrous oxide (laughing gas) and oxygen. This produces a mild sense of relaxation as well as an ability to mildly raise a patients pain threshold. It can be used alone or in combination with local anesthesia (Novocaine). The advantages include:

  • Works well for mild to moderate anxiety
  • Fast onset
  • Flexible duration
  • Easy to control or adjust level
  • Rapid recovery
  • Few side effects
  • Analgesic effect
  • You do not require a driver
  • You can return to your normal activities immediately

The disadvantages of inhalation sedation include:

  • Patients with severe anxiety may require a higher level of sedation
  • Contraindicated in patients with respiratory problems
  • Claustrophobic patients generally object to wearing a nose piece