Grimes Dentistry‘s Sedation Dentistry

Nitrous Oxide

Nitrous Oxide is a sweet-smelling, non-irritating, colorless gas which you can breathe. Nitrous Oxide has been the primary means of sedation in dentistry for many years. Nitrous oxide is safe. You will receive 30-70% nitrous with no less than 30% oxygen. We will use a pulse oximeter to measure your body’s oxygen levels for your added safety.

You will be able to breathe on your own and remain in control of all bodily functions. You may experience mild amnesia and may fall asleep, not remembering all of what happened during your appointment. Nitrous oxide is completely optional. You decide if you desire nitrous oxide or not.


  • The depth of sedation can be altered at any time to increase or decrease sedation.
  • There is no after effect, such as a “hangover”.
  • Inhalation sedation is safe, with no side effects on your heart and lungs, etc.
  • Inhalation sedation is very effective in minimizing gagging.
  • It works rapidly, as it reaches the brain within 20 seconds. In as little as 2-3 minutes, its relaxation and pain killing properties develop.

Reasons to not use Nitrous Oxide

  • Pregnant women may not use nitrous oxide.
  • A history of high risk of collapsed lung.
  • A diagnosis of COPD (emphysema).
  • Bowel Obstruction
  • Unusually Low Blood Pressure

Oral Sedation

Click Here for a Video on Oral Sedation Procedure

Grimes Dentistry offers oral sedation for various surgeries, longer appointments, or for patients with anxiety. Dr. Grimes will dispense to you either Halcion or Ativan; both are considered safe benzodiazapines. These medications will be taken as soon as you arrive at the dental office for your procedure, generally one hour prior to your appointment. The medications have sedative and anti-anxiety properties. We will use pulse oximetry equipment to measure your body’s oxygen for added safety. You may not remember much of what happened during and shortly after your appointment so you need to have a responsible person drive you and care for you until the sedation effects diminish.

Before Oral Sedation

  • You may not have anything to eat or drink for eight (8) hours prior to the appointment.
  • A responsible adult must accompany the patient to the office, remain in the office during the procedure, and drive the patient home.
  • The patient should not drive a vehicle, or operate any machinery, for 24 hours following the anesthesia experience.
  • Please wear loose fitting clothing with sleeves which can be rolled up past the elbow, and low-heeled shoes.
  • Contact lenses, jewelry, and dentures must be removed at the time of surgery.
  • Do not wear lipstick, excessive makeup, or nail polish on the day of surgery.
  • If you have an illness such as a cold, sore throat, stomach or bowel upset, please notify the office.
  • If you take routine oral medications, please check with Dr. Grimes prior to your surgical date for instructions.