Do It Myself Blog – Glenda Watson Hyatt

Motivational Speaker

Hey Doc, Where’s the Laughing Gas?

Filed under: Living with a disability — by at 11:56 am on Tuesday, March 6, 2012

The final chapter of the molar broke by an extra hard chocolate-covered coffee bean gets written on Friday. The ending is the one I was really hoping to avoid: extraction under general anaesthesia in hospital.

Since learning the date of this unhappy ending, I have been oscillating between Eckhart Tolle’s “being in the now” and Gary Zukav’s “allow yourself to feel what you’re feeling”.

Right now the sky is blue, the sun is shining, the radio is on and I am doing what I love – writing. Nothing else at this time matters.

In the next moment, I am thinking how hospitals are my least favourite place to be;  the lack of dignity, privacy and respect as an intelligent being leaves me feeling depleted and devalued. But what I am dreading most are the sensations of being put under: leaving my husband and Mom, the less than cozy warm operating room, the sight of torturous-looking equipment, the smell of the black rubber or clear plastic gas mask…in all of the times I have been put under, I’ve yet to encounter laughing gas in my mask, but rather a claustrophobic, uneasy, tingling, numbing sensation that I can not fight off. I succumb, hoping that I will wake up and without any further complications. The memories make me shudder and bring tears to my eyes, again.

I will be relieved when this molar’s final chapter is complete and I can get on with writing my next one.

If you enjoyed this post, consider buying me a chai tea latte. Thanks kindly.

Related Posts



Comment by Nancy Swanson

March 6, 2012 @ 12:29 pm

Though I can’t relate to all that you are dealing with, I, too, dislike the sensations that go along with “laughing” gas. The last time it (nitrous oxide) was used on me was when I had a root canal done, or should I say started. Between the nitrous, the anesthetic, and the rubber dam, I became one big anxiety attack; and the dentist had to stop in the middle of everything. I don’t mind going to the dentist. At one time I worked as a dental assistant. But, having that little control of the situation was just too much. I went back a week later, and the dr. completed the root canal minus all the anesthetic. It was a much easier day. We’ll keep you in our prayers.

Comment by Sue

March 6, 2012 @ 1:31 pm

Hey Glenda. So ask for the happy stuff BEFORE they start you on the gas stuff. They should be able to give you an injection of some dreamy woozy make-you-feel-good stuff. That way, you won’t notice the gas mask. I had a ton of dental work done last year, and I have to say, I loved the good stuff they gave me before the gas stuff. I woke up, itching too get out of their office, but not remembering anything other than laughing at the nurse who was laughing at me yammering away. Until they shut me up with the shot!

Tell them. Good drugs. You want the happy stuff!!! Believe me, it makes a heckuva difference!

(BTW, totally missed seeing you this year. I hope you can make it to CSUN next year!)

Comment by Mary McD

March 6, 2012 @ 2:44 pm

I second Sue’s comment – and I was going to suggest that you ask for what they give kids (flavored?) if they won’t give you something ahead of time. I’m not too sure I’d opt for bubble gum over rubber, but I’m not a bubble gum fan… but definitely, share your concerns and ask what alternatives are available.
We’ll keep you in our prayers.

Hugs from TX,
Mary (and Bill)

Comment by Sue

March 6, 2012 @ 3:35 pm

Oh yeah. Mary has a good point… that dam thing (or, as I call it, that damn dam)? Ask for it to be used, IF NECESSARY, only after you’re asleep. And at that point, you don’t need to worry about flavors! LOL!

I don’t normally have a gag reflex, but I suddenly do when that thing heads anywhere near my mouth!

But do ask for anything you think you may want or need… And especially anything that will make the procedure more “enjoyable.” Or at the very least, something that will be forgettable!

Comment by Glenda

March 6, 2012 @ 5:44 pm

Thank you for your thoughts and prayers.

My pre-op appointed is 7:30am Thursday…just gets better and better! I will be sure to ask what options I have. I don’t recall having a choice the last times though.

Comment by Paula Lee Bright

March 6, 2012 @ 6:40 pm

Thinking of you. I know you’ll make it through. Hang tough! When you wake up, and you will, your mom and husband will be there, and this will be behind you.

But alas, I know from experience that the kind of pep talk I just wrote doesn’t help a bit!!! Sorry it’s happening, kiddo.


Comment by Paula Lee Bright

March 6, 2012 @ 6:44 pm

She’s not having nitrous, folks. General anesthesia. They’re too different things entirely. But yep. Let them give you a relaxer, if you can. It helps me with the dread thing. I feel it when I get there, then the xanax or whatever just makes me think, “Oh, well. Okay.” I can even smile at the nurses by then.

Comment by Gayle

March 6, 2012 @ 8:03 pm

Print out your description of how you feel with the mask and going under and hand it to the anthesiologist that comes in to see you just before your surgery. The printed copy should say, is there any way you can help with this. As the others mentioned, there are ways to avoid that feeling. I had the problem of my mind waking up before my body, which is really scarey when you are alert but can’t move. I happened to tell one anthesiologist about it and he said he could make sure it didn’t happen again. And it didn’t! I was glad I brought it up!

Comment by Sue

March 7, 2012 @ 6:01 am

Doesn’t matter if it’s gas or general. It’s the same thing… you can ask for something to help relax you and put you in a feel good state before they actually give you whatever to knock you out. Ask for Versed if you can… best dream time drug ever!

Gayle’s suggestion is a great one… print out the things you don’t want and the things you want. I don’t know how Canadian medical/dental procedures work, but it sure wouldn’t hurt to ask and to be specific about your requests.

I’ll be sending tons of positive thoughts northward at 7:30 tomorrow morning! I’m sure you won’t need them though!

Comment by Glenda

March 7, 2012 @ 1:44 pm

Thanks everyone for your suggestions. I will see what the “sleep doctor” says tomorrow. I also want to avoid that pre-op red syrup that I had as a kid. It made me cough and choke, and extremely emotional. Darrell doesn’t know what he is in for. Personally, I prefer a few rum and cokes and then all would be fine!

And…I just had the call…I’m to be at the hospital for 10:45am Friday.

Comment by Sue

March 7, 2012 @ 1:51 pm

I just looked up Versed. It’s Midazolam, and it is given “before anesthesia for surgery to cause drowsiness, relieve anxiety, and prevent any memory of the event.” It is very fast acting, and has a very fast recovery time. And I promise… there is NO MEMORY of the event. You wake up in recovery and think “what?” That’s it? I’m DONE? Easy breezy! Having had two shoulder surgeries recently as well as a ton of major dental work (and twice I asked to be knocked out during the dental procedures), I would highly recommend the “sleepy time drugs.” Your surgeon or anesthesiologist will know exactly what you mean when you tell them that! I think the last time I had dental work, they administered the drugs while we were all talking and I think about halfway thru a sentence, suddenly I couldn’t do anything but sit there and just smile away. A little loony-bin-like, but hey, it worked! LOL!

So, lots of positive thoughts heading north at 7:30 tomorrow morning as well as 10:45 on Friday morning! You are gonna be INUNDATED with all those positive thoughts!!!

Comment by Glenda

March 7, 2012 @ 2:11 pm

Thank you, Sue. It all depends on what the sleep doctor has to offer. By this time Friday hopefully the worst will be over and I can focus on healing the extra hole in my head! 😉

And, thank you for all of your prayers and positive thoughts. I’ve realized this time IS different because I will have my loving husband with me, all my supportive friends near and far rooting for me, and, of course, Mom with her knitting needles click-clacking away – I am glad some things haven’t changed!

Comment by Sue

March 7, 2012 @ 2:23 pm

You have a LOT of people rooting for you!! Mom and hubby included!

Comment by Karen Lynn

March 8, 2012 @ 2:47 pm

Hi Glenda Watson Hytt,
I’ve been under a few times, myself! I won’t go into details because I could not handle the drugs they gave me. Personally,I prefer to stay away from doctor’s. And stay healthy. Boy is that a task- I say lots of whispering affirmations, to myself, of hope and encouragement. I prefer calling on the physician within to heal me rather than a doctor who is going to scare me half to death.

Just know that you are in good hands and say lots of healing thoughts before you go under…. Count on those miracles to come to pass. They will if you believe>:)))))

I’ll be with you in spirit and heart>:))))))
Take care.


RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>