Nitrous Oxide Sedation Fact Sheet

What is nitrous oxide?

Nitrous oxide (N2O) is a sweet smelling colourless non-irritating gas used in conscious sedation (with oxygen), also known as relative analgesia. It induces a depression of consciousness under which patients can still respond purposefully to verbal commands or light touch and maintain their protective reflexes.

When used as intended, nitrous oxide (when administered together with oxygen) is a safe and effective way of managing the pain and anxiety associated with dental procedures. Inhaled nitrous oxide is carried in physical solution only and does not combine with any blood elements. It produces effects almost immediately and is removed rapidly from the bloodstream through exhalation. 

Nitrous oxide Is the least toxic of the inhalational anaesthetic agents. Nitrous oxide sedation has been used in dentistry for over 150 years and is the most used inhalation anaesthetic in dentistry worldwide.


Nitrous oxide sedation relieves pain and has a calming effect, allowing patients to have necessary dental work while remaining relaxed and comfortable. 


How can it benefit my patients?

Nitrous oxide sedation may be suitable for patients who:

  • are afraid of needles and feel anxious about having a local anaesthetic injection
  • have had a traumatic experience that inhibits them from seeking dental treatment
  • are undergoing oral surgery or major dental work
  • suffer significant dental anxiety or phobia
  • have a fear of medical environments 

Nitrous oxide sedation can be especially useful for children’s dental treatments.

How can it help my clinic?

Having nitrous oxide sedation available in your clinic can help you to:

  • treat a wider range of patients, including children and those who are dental-phobic
  • ensure patients are calm and relaxed, so procedures are quicker and easier to perform
  • give patients a comfortable, pain-free experience, so they may be more compliant with regular dental care
  • have good control over your patients’ sedation and the ability to terminate sedation quickly
  • provide a high-quality service that patients recommend to friends, family and colleagues – helping your business to grow!

Nitrous oxide is relatively easy to administer and suitable for a wide range of dental procedures – from simple check ups to more complex surgeries.

How can Air Liquide Healthcare help me?

Air Liquide Healthcare are leaders in the relative analgesia field with more than 25 years’ market presence. Since 2010, we have supported ASDA nitrous oxide sedation training for more than 500 dentists.

We can help you with:

  • initial set up of relative analgesia equipment, including mixers, wall mountings, regulators, trolleys, cupboards, patient circuits, nasal hoods and masks
  • equipment training in your clinic 
  • supply of medical gases and consumables
  • direct maintenance services in line with Australian Standards

With more than 25 years’ market presence, Air Liquide Healthcare are leaders in the field of relative analgesia. We can help you with everything from setting up your equipment and training you to use it, to providing maintenance according to Australian Standards.

Our more than 300 staff are available to help you find the right products and services for your clinic.