Laughing gas - Anesthesia
Sometimes a dentist uses laughing gas sedation, a form of anesthesia in which the patient is conscious. Laughing gas is used in a mixture of a maximum of 50% laughing gas and 50% oxygen. It is mildly pain-killing (analgesic), anxiety-reducing (anxiolytic) and provides minimal muscle relaxation. This means that the patient experiences dental treatment as less threatening. With laughing gas treatment the cooperation of the patient is necessary, because the (mixed with oxygen) laughing gas is administered through a cap on the nose. The patient must therefore be able to inhale through the nose during treatment. In order to prevent the operators (dentist and assistant) from receiving the exhaled laughing gas, good air extraction and ventilation is necessary in the room where laughing gas is used. This form of anesthesia is often used to help very anxious patients, as well as patients with intellectual disabilities, get used to dental treatments. In a number of cases, increasingly less laughing gas is administered over time, until the treatments can be carried out entirely without laughing gas.