Things You Should Know About Laughing Gas

Posted on 07/05/2022

As pediatric dentists in Sugar Land, TX, and special needs pediatric dentists, Drs. Caldwell and Steinbring understand the importance of ensuring all patients are comfortable during their visit. Occasionally, there are specific treatments that can be implemented for this, and that's no laughing matter!

There is a lot of information about laughing gas and whether it is safe for a pediatric dentist to use. As you do your research, be sure to get all of the facts. Read on to better understand the things you should know about laughing gas before scheduling an appointment for your child or special needs patient.

What Is Laughing Gas?

Great question! Laughing gas or nitrous oxide is a gas that you breathe in through a mask. It is a sweet-smelling, colorless gas that has a slightly bitter taste. Nitrous oxide has been used by dentists for over 100 years!

How Does It Work?

When nitrous oxide is inhaled, it enters the bloodstream through the lungs. It then travels to the brain where it quickly produces feelings of relaxation. The gas allows patients to remain conscious and able to communicate with the dentist, but they may feel light-headed or giddy.

Is It Safe for Children?

Absolutely! Pediatric dentists often use nitrous oxide to help anxious or fidgety children feel more relaxed during their appointment. Laughing gas is safe for both children and adults.

What Are the Side Effects?

The side effects of laughing gas are usually mild and go away quickly once the gas is no longer being inhaled. Some common side effects include:


In very rare cases, some patients may experience more serious side effects such as:

-Allergic reaction
-Breathing difficulty
-High blood pressure

How Long Does It Last?

The effects of nitrous oxide typically only last a few minutes after the gas is no longer being inhaled. The dentist will usually give the patient oxygen to help them clear their head before leaving the office.

If you are in the Sugar Land area and have any questions about laughing gas or any other dental procedure, be sure to ask your dentist! They will be more than happy to answer any of your questions and help put your mind at ease.

Do you still have questions or concerns about laughing gas? Please contact our office and we would be happy to chat with you!