We want all our patients to feel comfortable and confident during their procedures.
The Pro-Nox™ Aesthetic System uses a 50/50 combination of inhaled oxygen and nitrous oxide to provide fast-acting pain relief. Nitrous, commonly known as laughing gas, is one of the oldest sedatives in medicine. While it is not a replacement for anesthesia, it does complement and enhance the effects of local anesthetics, like lidocaine.
Normally, a patient is given Hydrocodone (pain relief) and/or Valium (muscle relaxant). Since these drugs take hours to leave the body, a driver is needed to drive the patient home. Pro-Nox may be the right choice for patients:
- who are drug adverse,
- who want to manage their pain and anxiety,
- who wish to be alert after the procedure, or
- who wish to be able to drive themselves home.
What is Pro-Nox Used For?
We typically use Pro-Nox for a number of our procedures, such as in office surgeries, injections, vein treatments, and laser treatments. It is appropriate for virtually any procedure that patients may find painful. Studies have shown that Pro-Nox is an effective and non-addictive option for superior comfort during these procedures. Surgeries usually require some form of topical or injected numbing product, Valium, and/or Hydrocodone. With Pro-Nox, the procedure itself becomes much more comfortable for the patient, and the provider does not need to stop to relieve patient discomfort. It sometimes eliminates the need for injection numbing, which may cause more downtime if bruising occurs.
How Does It Work?
Pro-Nox is a natural blend of 50% oxygen and 50% nitrous analgesia, self-administered by the patient through a safe, valve inhalation system that only delivers the medical gases when the patient breathes in. The 50/50 mix has been safely and effectively used around the world in labor and delivery for decades.
During a procedure, the patient holds on to the disposable mouthpiece and hose as he/she breathes the nitrous oxide. The patient is in control of how much or how little of the nitrous oxide is needed during the procedure. Since each patient is different and is the best judge of comfort as well as discomfort, the control is put into the hands of the patient.
Is This the Same Laughing Gas at the Dentist?
No. The concentration of nitrous oxide that is generally used for dental and orthodontic procedures is up to 70%, compared to the 50/50 mixture utilized by the Pro-Nox System. When patients are given the nitrous mask for an oral health procedure, they have little to no control over the dosage and amount administered, unlike the Pro-Nox System which puts patients safely in control of their comfort at all times.
When Does It Take Effect?
The benefits of the split 50/50 mixture of nitrous oxide and oxygen gases, take effect within seconds of inhaling the blend, providing increased comfort and reduced anxiety. These effects last for a few minutes at a time, and can be extended by self-administering more of the mixture as needed. When using Pro-Nox, a patient breathes into the mouthpiece when needed. After administering, taking normal breaths allows the nitrous oxide to move out of the system quickly.
How Long Does Pro-Nox Last?
Effects wear off in 5-10 minutes. There is no trace of the chemical in the body. The short-lasting effects of Pro-Nox allow the patient to reap the benefits of an analgesic, while still being able to drive before and after an procedure. With Pro-Nox, patients now have the ability to respond to pain or discomfort on their own terms, without disrupting the rest of their day.
How Much Does Pro-Nox Cost?
Pro-Nox, which is not covered by insurance, normally costs $50. Procedures lasting over an hour can cost $100 to account for the extra gases. It is an out of pocket cost, but can paid with FSA or HSA funds. If you are apprehensive about ANY procedures at Carroll Total Healthcare or Trinity Med Spa, ask us if Pro-Nox is available.
Are There Any Contraindications?
Some possible short term side effects of nitrous oxide are dizziness, nausea, light-headedness, and unsteadiness. Anemia and/or a vitamin B12 deficiency is a major contraindication of Pro-Nox. Someone who suffers from extreme chronic fatigue, a typical symptom of anemia and B12 deficiency, should not use Pro-Nox. Pro-Nox is contraindicated for patients, providers and assistants in the first trimester of pregnancy. Other relative contraindications include nasal obstruction, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, active cystic ﬁbrosis, recent tympanic membrane surgery, claustrophobia, intoxication, and others.