Tips For Preparing For Your Oral Surgery With Nitrous Oxide

27 January 2017
 Categories: Dentist, Blog


If you require a specific type of oral surgery, then your dentist will work with you to determine the exact course of treatment that must occur before, during, and after the surgery. Part of the surgical plan will include anesthesia consideration. While some surgeries, like gum grafting operations and gum lifts, only require local anesthesia, more advanced surgeries require more aggressive sedation. Nitrous oxide is used in some cases. If your dentist tells you that the gas is necessary, then you can prepare for the anesthetic with the following tips.

Provide Medication Information

Some people believe that the administration of nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, is not a big deal. However, this is not the case. Nitrous oxide is a sedative that makes you feel calm and comfortable while the dental surgery is completed. It also reduces your level of pain so the dental procedure is not as unpleasant as it could be. Nitrous oxide works on the body by depressing many of your sensations. The gas is typically considered safe and a 50/50 mix of the gas and oxygen is used to make sure that your body is not deprived oxygen during inhalation.

While nitrous oxide is commonly considered safe for short term use, it can interact with certain medications. Specifically, if you are already taking a medication that depresses the nervous system or that makes you drowsy, then the nitrous oxide can reduce your breathing rate to unsafe levels.

Let your doctor know about any and all medications you take so interactions can be considered. Certain sleeping medications, anxiety drugs, and narcotic pain relievers are a few examples of medicines that can cause serious interactions with nitrous oxide. 

Eat A Small Meal

Your dentist is likely to tell you that you should not eat for at least a few hours before your oral surgery. Unfortunately, this may be difficult if you know that you cannot eat after your treatment is over. Eating is not a huge concern, like it would be if a general anesthetic were given. However, some people are sensitive to the effects of the nitrous oxide and may vomit after the surgery is over. This can cause bleeding problems and produce a great deal of pain.

If you are sensitive to anesthetics or sedatives, then it is wise to follow your dentist's orders. If you do not have trouble with nausea after surgical operations, then it may be safe to eat a small meal at least two to three hours before your surgery. Also, try to eat easily digestible foods that will fill you up for a long period of time. Eggs, oatmeal, and whole fruits are a few good options. 

For more information and options, talk with a delta dental oral surgeon.