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Nitrous oxide is one option your dentist may offer to help make you comfortable during certain procedures. Inhaled through a small mask that fits over your nose, nitrous oxide is mixed with oxygen to help you relax. Your dentist will ask you to breathe normally through your nose, and within a few short minutes you should start to feel the effects of the nitrous oxide. You may feel light headed or a tingling in your arms and legs. Some people say their arms and legs feel heavy. Ultimately, you should feel calm and comfortable. Nitrous oxide is not intended to put you to sleep. You will be able to hear and respond to any requests or directions the dentist may have. This is called "conscious sedation." The effects of nitrous oxide wear off soon after the treatment has ended and the mask is removed.