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Substance Abuse and Rehabilitation

ISSN: 1179-8467

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Last laugh: dangers of nitrous oxide misuse

Typical clinical use of nitrous oxide, otherwise known as laughing gas, is for sedation during painful procedures. However, in recent years the misuse of nitrous oxide as a recreational drug has become prominent, known for its instantaneous and pleasant effects. Less than pleasant, though, are the psychological and physical consequences of nitrous oxide misuse. Users may experience euphoria related to nitrous oxide use, but drug-induced psychosis, mood disorders, and traumatic brain injuries are equally as likely. This Thematic Series investigates how to prevent nitrous oxide misuse as it rises in popularity as a substance, including risk factors leading to misuse, social factors affecting use, improving knowledge and more.