Registered: 09/28/09 Posts: 2
Reply with quote #1
There's pretty conclusive scientific evidence that suggests the worst possible negative health consequence of nitrous oxide use is potential vitamin B12 depletion and only from very long term very excessive use (months-years of daily all day use) that can be counter-acted with a simple B12 supplement. An overdose is impossible and the only way one might die is if they suffocate from doing something stupid like putting a bag over their head. If you are doing any inhalants other than N2O, for Christ's sake do yourself a favor and switch to what the doctors use. This isn't to say that drug addiction isn't a problem, but if you're stuck addicted you might as well be addicted to something that isn't going to kill you. And to top it off, nitrous does not create nearly as painful comedown or hangover (not at all if you only do a little) and is likewise not quite as addicting as other inhalants. If you're worried about nitrous not being sufficient for satisfying your uncontrollable cravings, don't worry, it will be as good as anything. If you are interested look for nitrous canisters (AKA whippits) and a cracker or reusable whipped cream container. Some simple research should get you on your way. You can buy all this stuff online (ie. ebay). Seriously, this could save your life.
Of course, if you are addicted; take all measures you otherwise would to solve your problem. I suggest immediately checking into rehab. But if you are going to be stuck with an addiction for now it should definitely not be with toxins.
Alliance for Consumer Education
Registered: 01/24/08 Posts: 162
Reply with quote #2
To all- 'Huffing' Nitrous Oxide is not safe! Educate yourself: http://www.enotes.com/drugs-substances-encyclopedia/nitrous-oxide/effects-body Inhaling Nitrous Oxide WILL cause respiratory despression; as the gas replaces oxygen in the lungs- prompting asphyxiation (death caused by the inability to breathe). Nitrous pushes oxygen out of the blood. Without a sufficient supply of oxygen in the bloodstream, the tissues and organs of the body cannot function properly and will become damaged. Users also run the risk of vomiting and losing consciousness while intoxicated by nitrous, increasing the liklihood of death by choking. Even if vomiting does not occur, an individual who loses consciousness from an overdose of nitrous oxide is likely to stop breathing. ______ Alyssa ACE
Registered: 09/28/09 Posts: 2
Reply with quote #3
Nitrous Oxide does not cause respiratory depression. It is not a depressant but rather an NMDA antagonist and dissociative drug. It does not cause CNS depression but rather a state of general anesthesia. It is not humanly possible to consume nitrous oxide quickly enough to come anywhere near an anesthetic state that involves the cessation of breathing. It is IMPOSSIBLE for a human being to overdose on nitrous oxide.
What you are referring to is suffocation, which is a very difficult thing to accidentally accomplish. It would require that the individual create a permanent airtight seal over their mouth that prevents them from inhaling air. If the nitrous oxide is properly mixed with oxygen, one could hook up a mask to their face and inhale only from that indefinitely without harm. If one were to inhale nitrous without oxygen mixed in, it should be done without a sealed mask, as this will hurt the individual only because the sealed mask will suffocate the individual if they enter an anesthetic state, not because of any harm done by the nitrous oxide. This is extremely rare, however, as individuals almost exclusively inhale nitrous oxide from a balloon or canister or other device that does not attach to their face. In these cases, the individual releases the object/device and begins to breathe air automatically, regardless of whether or not they have reached an anesthetic state, because nitrous oxide anesthesia does NOT cause respiratory depression. Nitrous does NOT "replace" air from the lungs or blood. It enters the blood independently from and at the same time as oxygen that is simultaneously inhaled. Unless one were to use nitrous that isn't mixed with oxygen and create an air-tight seal around their mouth and nose that prevents them from breathing air (why would you ever do this?!), there is no danger for suffocation.
Also, vomiting is highly unlikely; there is no particular reason for an individual to vomit while using nitrous oxide. Of course, this is a risk, but it is no more a risk than going to sleep at night. Vomiting in your sleep and choking is as likely as vomiting and choking while on nitrous.
Alliance for Consumer Education
Registered: 01/24/08 Posts: 162
Reply with quote #4
Dear N2Oforgoodhealth, I appreciate your comments regarding various aspects of nitrous oxide usage. While, you offered very detailed information on specific routes of ingestion; abuse of any product even nitrous oxide can be fatal. There is no safe alternative to abusing nitrous gas or any inhalant for that matter. Instead of promoting what may be 'less dangerous' alternatives of nitrous ingestion, I feel that everyone should advocate on behalf of treatment and recovery for those suffering with inhalant addiction. Yesterday a newspaper out of Lansing, Michigan reported on the tragic death of a 25-year-old male who fell and struck his head while 'huffing' nitrous oxide. I encourage you to check out ACE's blog post referencing this incident: http://inhalant-info.blogspot.com/2009/10/nitrous-oxide-triggers-fatal-fall.html. While, the victim's fall inevitably caused his death, the effects of the nitrous oxide contributed significantly to his altered state of mind and body. If he had not been 'huffing' nitrous, its safe to say the young man would still be with us today. Regardless of how substances, toxins, or synthetic chemicals may enter one's body, the physiological effects and health consequences can vary from person to person- much like the outcome in a game of Russian Roulette. _________ Alyssa ACE TEAM
Registered: 07/06/08 Posts: 149
Reply with quote #5
I'm very appalled this thread has not been deleted yet. To get onto an inhalant awareness site and say "nitrous oxide is better for you and ok to inhale, so use this instead" is absolutely obsurd. Even seeing the screen name N2Oforgoodhealth makes me want to VOMIT.
OK N2Oforgoodhealth, so let's just go ahead and say no drugs kill, cigarettes are GOOD for you, alcohol in extreme excess is GOOD for you, guns don't kill people, let's all go jump off skyscrapers because that won't kill you either!! When I first read your first post I thought you were JOKING - sick joke, but I really didn't think you were serious. It's people like YOU that make me want to stay off these boards. If you want to spew that blaspemous BS please go on another site. Do your research, nitrous oxide CAN kill you. Why would anyone want to inhale something other than air??? You want to live? You want to be safe? Breathe what humans were made to breathe - AIR. So let me correct N2Oforgoodhealth... for a safer "high", go outside and take a deep breathe of some FRESH AIR. Get your high off of life, not some toxic chemicals that can ruin you and your loved ones lives in the blink of an eye. JF
Registered: 06/16/06 Posts: 676
Reply with quote #6
N2Oforgoodhealth- I ran your posts passed one of our resources who is well-versed on pharmacology and toxicology. His words are below: The user is correct in many of his/her comments about the probable mechanism by which nitrous oxide works as an anesthetic gas. It has been successfully used for decades in the OR for this purpose. However, it certainly is possible to die from abuse of nitrous oxide if it is used inappropriately. I personally am aware of two cases, both OR personnel, who died from apparent asphyxia while abusing this agent. Others are reported. Nitrous oxide, particularly with repetitive exposure, is also clearly associated with toxicity to a number of organs, including the nervous system, blood, heart and immune system. Risks of these toxic effects are particularly apparent with nitrous oxide abuse. With this being said, death is possible and long term effects of abuse are harmful. I like your initial point of seeking help by way of rehab if you are battling an addiction, and wish you would argue that point more so than advocating for nitrous oxide abuse. Lastly, our apologies Jarods_fiancee for not deleting this post. We are trying to give people a place to come and discuss inhalants openly and honestly without fear of being judged. In case someone out there has a similar idea about nitrous oxide wanted to debate it openly. In doing this hopefully it will get through that, as you suggested the only “safe” alternative to inhalant abuse is not doing it at all. __________________ Queshia B
Registered: 02/02/10 Posts: 2
Reply with quote #7
Originally Posted by
Jarods_fiancee I'm very appalled this thread has not been deleted yet. To get onto an inhalant awareness site and say "nitrous oxide is better for you and ok to inhale, so use this instead" is absolutely obsurd. Even seeing the screen name N2Oforgoodhealth makes me want to VOMIT. OK N2Oforgoodhealth, so let's just go ahead and say no drugs kill, cigarettes are GOOD for you, alcohol in extreme excess is GOOD for you, guns don't kill people, let's all go jump off skyscrapers because that won't kill you either!! When I first read your first post I thought you were JOKING - sick joke, but I really didn't think you were serious. It's people like YOU that make me want to stay off these boards. If you want to spew that blaspemous BS please go on another site. Do your research, nitrous oxide CAN kill you. Why would anyone want to inhale something other than air??? You want to live? You want to be safe? Breathe what humans were made to breathe - AIR. So let me correct N2Oforgoodhealth... for a safer "high", go outside and take a deep breathe of some FRESH AIR. Get your high off of life, not some toxic chemicals that can ruin you and your loved ones lives in the blink of an eye. JF wow this is the most rediculous thing i have ever read everything you have said is wrong nitrous is safer than other inhalants and runs no risk of killing you unlike alcohol and cigarettes and jumping off a building, you could sit there with an oxygen/nitrous oxide mask on for hours on end and run abesolutley no risk of death.
Registered: 02/02/10 Posts: 8
Reply with quote #8
It might just be me but I love when people post opinions as facts on these boards. Please leave them up. It just gets a discussion going where the correct information is then given out.
It might just be me but if as you say "you can sit there with an oxygen/nitrous oxide mask on for hours on end and run abesolutley no risk of death" then why is it a doctor or nurse is required to be in the room with you at all times when this is being done. Just a thought.
Registered: 06/16/06 Posts: 676
Reply with quote #9
letsgetouttahere- Thanks for your post. Please note just because a substance doesn't trigger sudden sniffing death syndrome doesn't make it safer. Primary dangers of inhaling nitrous oxide are oxygen deprivation, frost bite, loss of motor control, vitamin B12 and folic acid interference, disorientation, hallucinations and nausea. My apologies if I sound crass, but there is no one way to die. People abuse inhalants and get behind the wheel and crash, fall, drowning, etc (i.e. fatal fall). As I said in an earlier post the safest alternative is to not abuse at all. Abuse is abuse regardless of the product. __________________ Queshia B
Registered: 02/03/10 Posts: 1
Reply with quote #10
I am not a nitrous user; I'm a researcher who stumbled onto this searching for other things. The topic made me curious and so I did some quick research and I want to post here what I see as common debate points that I only see partially covered here. I'm posting these because I would like to see these addressed in TRUE clinical research findings, not outraged parents, or people trying to justify that Nitrous is OK. Maybe it is, maybe it's not, but I think that people should know the true clinical facts and decisions. Here are the discussion points:
1. Nitrous Oxide is chemically N2O (two parts Nitrogen to one part Oxygen). It has 33.3% Oxygen when common air that we breath only has 20.94%--but the chemical bond is so strong that it will not readily release the Oxygen molecule into your lungs when you breath it in, so you must supplement it with 21% oxygen (oxygen not air, pure 100% oxygen) to replace the oxygen levels normally found in air.
2. If you secure a mask over your face and something goes wrong that prevents this 21% oxygen you can die. If you are alone and intoxicated with the Nitrous you won't know, and if your friends are drunk or drugged up they won't know, and if your friends are not licensed medical doctors they don't have the training to know if you are in fact suffocating. So technically there is some risk--most will say that the risk is low and facts would be on their side because few people die compared to the number of people who do this--but the risk is real and needs to be considered because death is not like "game over" start a new game, it's really game over.
3. Similar to the tied mask comment, medical masks with gas flow meters are used by people to mix the oxygen and Nitrous Oxide together the safest way possible. This is true and it would be the safest way to do this--again, if the people watching you are not Doctors, then there is some risk, minor as it is. The main risk that I can think of is what happens if the oxygen tank pressure stops or the oxygen hose is crimped or some drunk idiot turns the oxygen off/down as a joke, and your buddies are too wasted to notice. These are the more likely risks when doing this with other impaired party happy people. So the greater risk is that you are very vulnerable to the ability of your impaired friends to recognize if you are in danger.
4. Nitrous Oxide comes out extremely cold and the risk of harming your lips, mouth and especially your vocal cords can be quite high, and you won't know they are getting frost bite because your senses are dulled. There are ways to avoid this by warming up the Nitrous first by placing it inside of a balloon, or by letting the gas warm up through some device that provides enough heat-transfer to warm up the gas to room temperature.
5. Long term high dose use (I've read number showing over 60 tubes per week) for around 3 month or more has resulted in severe problems that have hospitalized people. Much of this is due to B12 deficiency and other complications. I would be very interested to know more specifics on the problems because there are TONS, I mean tons of posts that say, if you supplement your diet with B12 each day, you will eliminate those risks. No one says how much B12, or how much B12 is needed for certain levels of use (e.g. tubes per week). There needs to be some factual, clinical, doctor opinion on this so that people who do this can at least do it safer than guessing. I'm not condoning this use, but some people are going to do this because the feel that they "need" a "safe" drug--Nitrous is considered by many to be in the realm of pot, as a "safe drug". So In my opinion, there needs to be some serious information regarding B12, how much, and what are the true risks even if you are supplementing B12.
6. Vomiting is a risk because a person using Nitrous Oxide can vomit while doing this if they have eaten within 4-hours and the person can be unable to clear their own vomit and they choke to death.
7. People need to be in a chair or lying down because they can (and often have) fallen down and broken limbs or fallen out of windows, or onto objects.
8. Extended use can lead to anemia (uh-NEE-mee-uh), a condition in which the blood is lacking in oxygen-carrying red blood cells; or nerve damage can result that makes it difficult/impossible to walk, and can give a tingling, numbness, or pain in the arms and legs. All of these side effects are "usually" reversible if nitrous use is stopped. This is what I've read, I'd like to know the clinical facts.
9. People who have a genetic disorder called phenylketonuria (fenn-uhl-kee-tuh-NORR-ee-yuh) should be particularly careful about nitrous oxide use. Phenylketonuria (PKU) is an inherited disorder that interferes with the breakdown of a certain protein called phenylalanine (fenn-uhl-AL-uh-neen). The protein is found in milk, eggs, and other foods. Individuals with PKU require a special diet that can cause a vitamin B12 deficiency. Because nitrous oxide can remove even more B12 from the bloodstream, the possibility of nerve and brain damage is especially high under these circumstances.
PERSONAL SIDE NOTE: Lastly, the reason that this sparked my interest is because my wife had a medical accident done to her, which caused severe permanent nerve damage to her spinal cord (it was nicked with a spinal tap) and so she has severe, incredible pain--like that of a burn victim all the time, none stop. It's horrific. She's prescribed 120mg of methadone a day and it only dulls the pain enough to keep from crying and screaming. When I read this I was ready to go get licensed as a nurse just to be able to legally administer a certain amount of temporary (30 minutes, an hour, whatever would be safe) relief to her on a daily basis under a doctors care if this could be done safely--so I'm very interested in the potential medical aspects of this. Because in her case, even temporary relief would be a gift.
MY LAST, REALLY LAST POINT: I've never been addicted to anything really, but I am an artistic person and have an addictive personality and so I know what it's like to have a vulnerability to it. This is what I've found in my life. The more unhappy that I am inside, the more that I want to be happy and some form of "safe drug" has entered my mind (e.g. vaporizing pot and now this would probably be in that category of "safe" prospects). But I now realize that I'm really trying to dull a pain inside that I have NEVER know was there at the time when I was in pain. I think that it's impossible to know that you are in pain when you are going through the pain--it's at least rare to recognize it. If you are looking for a safe drug as I have at time, look deep inside and you will probably find some pain. Here is what I've learned, we often feel trapped and belief a lie--the lie is that we only have 3 choices: endure the pain, dull the pain, or kill yourself (in fact people who kill themselves only see 2 choices, endure the pain or kill myself). But it's a lie, there are other options, the best option is: make the pain go away--make choices that make the pain go away; e.g. leave a relationship, get a new job, choose a different career, go to school, find new friends, go to church... something, but make some changes, take action to make the pain go away, search deep find the painful parts and do things to make it go away. So I started to look at why I wanted to dull the pain and that has made all the difference in the world. For me, I finally realized through extensive research that Christianity is correct and chose to become a Christian and that took away the pain for me; everyone much choose how to make the pain go away, or they will be a slave to looking for a safe drug to dull pain they don't even know exists in my opinion. But that's a side note, I'm more interested in what I described in my notes above for clinical facts on this drug.
Registered: 10/16/08 Posts: 548
Reply with quote #11
Nitrous oxide is a gas, and it is, unfortunately, *not* a healthy alternative to other inhalants. Licensed dentists (and doctors) that administer nitrous oxide get extensive training and are the only people that may safely administer the product. Those that use nitrous from whipped cream dispensers called 'whippets' or such are kidding themselves if they don't believe that the effects are damaging. Please do consider getting into a treatment program for substance abuse and making good choices as your quality of life and life itself is at risk. Please take good care of yourself.
Registered: 10/11/12 Posts: 1
Reply with quote #12
Whippets do kill . I have just buried my 27 yr old son. He used nitrous alot and it caused no end of problems . Seizure , mental probs and eventually death. You all think you know soo much but it's not until you are dead that relatives find the truth
Registered: 10/16/08 Posts: 548
Reply with quote #13
Originally Posted by
Topcatfish Whippets do kill . I have just buried my 27 yr old son. He used nitrous alot and it caused no end of problems . Seizure , mental probs and eventually death. You all think you know soo much but it's not until you are dead that relatives find the truth I am so sorry for the loss of your beloved son. My sincere condolences to you and your entire family. I cannot imagine that shock and devastation of such a loss. Thank you for sharing your heartfelt story so that others can learn the truth that *no* type of inhalant is safer than the next. It is a fallacy to believe otherwise. Bless you for helping others to prevent such a tragedy. My friend actually has a severe Brain Injury from inhalant use at the age of 12, now in her 30s. A lot of people are just not aware of the true dangers of huffing. Thanks again for letting others know how dangerous inhaling toxins are regardless of the type of product.
Registered: 07/21/12 Posts: 13
Reply with quote #14
oh how i wish nitrous oxide was a perfectly 'safe' alternative sadly it is not... long term effects even under controlled usage in an operating room are noted. therefore there really are no safe alternatives.
Registered: 01/18/14 Posts: 1
Reply with quote #15
How come all the negative stories about nitrous oxide are always "my friends daughter" / "someone I know" or from accounts as their first post... not to mention with absolutely zero evidence to back them up.
Now, you may just think "oh look another junkie"... that isn't the case. I'm not totally dismissing the negative qualities of nitrous... anything can be abused and mis-used. The thing is, the science and data surrounding recreational nitrous use only shows the previously alluded to issues of B-vitamin deficiencies and anaemia, both in extreme cases. Obviously anyone standing who could fall and hit their head will be running a risk too... but the OP, and anyone advocating an evidence/reasoning approach to these things, are right.
We should be basing drug education on information and keeping people safer... not pretending that there is a chance in hell that people are going to just listen to either people saying " SAY NO TO DRUGS! " or " DRUGS ARE EVIL <insert propaganda/lies here> !" For some, an abstinence based treatment program will be the only way, for the majority, education will be what helps keep people safe.
Prohibition of drugs and this attitude of lying to people despite tons of evidence to the contrary is what is causing most of the harm. Drugs and "users" are here to stay, the ONLY thing we can do is help people make safer, wiser and most importantly informed decisions.
If you really think nitrous is so unsafe, or any of the illicit drugs we are warned against so often, you may want to Google a couple of brand new super dangerous drugs that are WIPING out the planet; Alcohol and tobacco... I hadn't heard of them either.