Laughing gas

Laughing gas is actually one of the oxides of nitrogen. It chemical formula is N2O since its molecule is made up of 2 atoms of nitrogen (N) and one atom of oxygen (O). Here I shall refer to it as N2O with laughing gas in brackets after it i.e. N2O (laughing gas). The name laughing gas comes from it effects at relatively low concentrations. At higher concentrations N2O (laughing gas) is used to provide anaesthesia. As an anaesthetic it is relatively weak and most modern anaesthetics use mixtures of nitrous oxide with other stronger anaesthetic agents. When people breathe N2O (laughing gas) at concentration just below those that can cause anaesthesia, they often lose their inhibitions and begin to giggle and laugh uncontrollably, hence laughing gas. N2O (laughing gas) is one of the safest drugs known to medicine and has been used safely in millions of surgical operations per year since the middle of the 19th Century. There is no anaesthetic agent that has such a long history of effective and safe use. A more recent discovery was that N2O (laughing gas) can be used to treat the addictive withdrawal state to alcohol, nicotine, heroin, methaqualone, cannabis and cocaine. A withdrawal state begins shortly after the drug of abuse is no longer taken by the person who is addicted. A withdrawal state can be very unpleasant, and may be responsible for the addict returning to their addiction. Fortunately the only drug that is associated with death during a withdrawal state is alcohol or alcohol mixed with other sedative drugs such as barbiturates. Although there are deaths associated with other drugs like heroin, this usually occurs because of over dosages not during the withdrawal.  Of course, the withdrawal state associated with heroin is still very uncomfortable. Here, N2O (laughing gas) has been shown to rapidly reverse heroin and other addictive drug withdrawals states rapidly and effectively.

 

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Laughing gas

Laughing gas

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