How Happy Gas Works to Help You Relax While You're Getting a Filling

How Happy Gas Works to Help You Relax While You're Getting a Filling

Dental anxiety and phobia are more common than you think. Up to 20% of Americans postpone dental visits and necessary care due to their fear of dentists, which only causes a cascading set of consequences. If you’ve been putting off getting a filling out of fear that it will be unpleasant or painful, laughing gas might be the solution. 

At the dental practice of Dr. Padmaja Yalamanchili in Fairfax, Virginia, “happy gas” is available both for pediatric dental patients who need a filling but are nervous, and also adults who need routine or emergency dentistry fillings and are stressed about the process.

Understanding dental anxiety 

It’s natural to fear dental pain and tooth loss; dental phobia has roots just as deep as our teeth. Dentists also have a history in the horror genre, with many films depicting pliers, drills, and dental chairs to upset and disquiet viewers. 

Unpleasant experiences can also contribute to dental anxiety. In a study of 130 patients with irreversible pulpitis, more than 83% experienced moderate to high dental anxiety about going back to the dentist following their root canal. If not given proper pain relief and sedatives during a procedure, it’s normal to fear going back to the dentist in the future. 

Along with feeling nervous about your appointment, you might experience other symptoms of dental anxiety, including: 

Many people feel that dental anxiety is a personal weakness they must overcome or simply endure, but this doesn’t have to be the case.

How happy gas can help 

If every single visit to the dentist is unpleasant, you’ll naturally grow to dislike having dental work done. This sentiment causes many people to ditch routine cleanings and checkups, leading to cavities that require fillings. 

The problem perpetuates itself when the filling process is just as unpleasant as the patient expects, leading them to repeat this cycle and risk further tooth decay. 

Nitrous oxide, often known as laughing gas or happy gas, can make the procedure much easier, removing the anxiety and pain from the equation. Unlike anesthesia, happy gas does not put you to sleep. 

You’ll still be able to understand questions and follow directions, you’ll just have a slowed reaction time. Your body will become heavy and relaxed, and you might space out while Dr. Yalamanchili works on your teeth. 

Once your filling has been packed and sealed, you’ll be able to remove the mask and begin recovering from the side effects. It typically takes a few moments for the effects to wear off, and you might need someone to drive you home if you still feel delayed or giddy. 

Some people experience nausea or headaches after inhaling happy gas for long periods of time, but Dr. Yalamanchili will work quickly to make the experience as short and simple as possible. 

Suspect you might have a cavity? Worried about getting it filled? Schedule a consultation by calling 703-213-5312, or book an appointment online

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