Advertisement

Are there any risks in using nitrous oxide?

Nitrous oxide is a safe and well-tolerated sedative with few risks. Nitrous oxide can be adjusted as it is delivered and even reversed, if needed. While breathing nitrous oxide during a medical procedure, you should be awake, fully conscious, and able to speak. If you are having nitrous oxide with a dental procedure, it is important to follow your dentist's instructions about not eating food two hours prior to the visit. If you have respiratory congestion or are taking medications, be sure and let the dentist know before taking nitrous oxide.
There are few risks with nitrous oxide when it is used appropriately by trained healthcare professionals. There is always a risk that too much nitrous oxide may be administered in error, but the effects of the overdose would last only for a short time. Any abused inhalant, including nitrous oxide, can cause sudden sniffing death (SSD), even with the first use. It is not understood how it happens, but complications with the heart result in death. Overexertion or a startling jolt has been implicated as a possible trigger for this occurrence. Risk of exposure is increased when working in areas that regularly use nitrous oxide. In its liquid form, nitrous oxide is very cold and can cause frostbite.

Continue Learning about Nitrous Oxide

What should I avoid while using nitrous oxide?
RealAgeRealAge
You don't have to change your routine too much before taking nitrous oxide, because it's a lower...
More Answers
How is nitrous oxide used in tubal ligations or tubectomies?
Stacy Wiegman, PharmDStacy Wiegman, PharmD
Nitrous oxide is used in tubal ligations (tubectomies) to inflate the abdominal cavity. The medica...
More Answers
Should I receive nitrous oxide if I am pregnant?
Stacy Wiegman, PharmDStacy Wiegman, PharmD
If you are pregnant now or plan to get pregnant, you should not receive nitrous oxide without ta...
More Answers
Should I drive after receiving nitrous oxide?
Stacy Wiegman, PharmDStacy Wiegman, PharmD
After you receive nitrous oxide and the mask has been removed, you should feel fine. It may take...
More Answers

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.