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Why is nitrous gas during a dental procedure used for? - Online Doctor Chats

Date : 06-Apr-2014
User rating for this question
Very Good Posted in: Dental Health
Answered by

General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 1776 Questions
User:I had a temp crown put in today. I always have nitrous because of a flashback problem from a very bad procedure when I was 19. Nitrous has always had some effect on me....always. Not this time. Nothing. I told them something was wrong. They assured me that their equipment was working fine and they had the settings as high as they could go safely. If that was the case I should've been higher than a kite and asking them to turn it down. My goal is to prevent a flashback, not slip into the netherworld. When I asked them why it had no effect on that setting they replied that it may be my emotional state is different. What I found confusing is my state was no different than it has been the other times. I look at this as much for their protection as my being relaxed. With my military background and training, a flashback will give everyone a seriously bad day, some worse than others.
I've never heard of anyone developing an immunity to nitrous. But I can't figure out how they could have it at it's maximum setting and yet to absolutely no effect. Something is very amiss here.
Let me read your query for few minutes to be able to have a good discussion here.
Doctor:From what I understand your concern is related to use of nitrous gas during a dental procedure. The most important role is to bring down the pain. However I am unable to understand what flash back problems you usually have in the past.
Doctor:It is also not very clear what really happened during the last dental visit.
User:No, the most important thing is not for pain. It's to prevent me from jumping out of the chair. The novacaine does just fine for pain
User:Every visit in the past the nitrous has had some effect
User:When I was 19 and in the military they did a triple wisdom tooth removal with bad novacaine. It's the standard to which I judge pain even to this day.
User:This is why I can eliminate the "emotional state" issue. Today was not different than any other day at the dentist, except for the nitrous.
Doctor:I don't think emotional state of an individual would render nitrous gas ineffective.
User:Wonder what is it then?
Doctor:I can only think of inadequate proportion or a fault in the mode of administration as the cause. However as a physician, I do not use anaesthetic medicines routinely in my clinical practice. Therefore with your permission, I would like to refer your question to an expert specialist.
User:Appreciate that
Doctor:I shall refer your question to the specialist. I will get back to you by an email.
User:Allright. When do you think I'll get a response. This is a safety issue for me.
Doctor:I will get back to you within the next 24 hours.
User:Sounds good. Thx.
Doctor:Thanks for consulting me.
Doctor:Bye for now.
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