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What is nitrous oxide?

You may know nitrous oxide as "laughing gas," the sedative your dentist uses to help you relax before a procedure. Your dentist places a mask over your nose so you can breathe in the nitrous oxide. It can relax, calm, and lull you into comfort. When your dental procedure is done, you take a few breaths of oxygen and the nitrous oxide is removed from your body.
At room temperature, nitrous oxide is a colorless, odorless, tasteless gas used for general anesthesia. It also is known as laughing gas. It is used in low doses for analgesia in obstetrics and during procedures, especially dental, that do not require unconsciousness. Higher doses can produce analgesia, pain relief. It is given through inhalation methods, which means it is inhaled into the lungs. It wears off quickly, shortly after it is discontinued.

Continue Learning about Nitrous Oxide

What happens if I miss a dose of nitrous oxide?
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It is unlikely that you will miss a dose of nitrous oxide because it will be administered by tra...
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Is the use of nitrous oxide safe for pregnant women?
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The use of nitrous oxide in pregnant women is controversial, and it is preferable pregnant women not...
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Does nitrous oxide interact with other medications or foods?
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Nitrous oxide can increase the effects of barbiturates and alcohol, which depress the central ne...
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How is nitrous oxide used in dental procedures?
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Nitrous oxide (often called laughing gas) is used as a sedative in dental procedures. To adminis...
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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.