Oral Sedation/Nitrous Oxide

Inhaled Minimal Sedation

You breathe Nitrous Oxide -- otherwise known as "laughing gas" -- combined with oxygen through a mask that's placed over your nose. The gas helps you relax. Your dentist can control the amount of sedation you receive, and the gas tends to wear off quickly. This is the only form of sedation where you may be able to drive yourself home after the procedure.

Oral Sedation

Depending on the total dose given, oral sedation can range from minimal to moderate. For minimal sedation, you take a pill. Typically, the pill is Halcion, which is a member of the same drug family as Valium, and it's usually taken about an hour before the procedure. The pill will make you drowsy, although you'll still be awake. Some people become groggy enough from oral sedation to actually fall asleep during the procedure. They usually can, though, be awakened with a gentle shake.


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