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The recreational use of nitrous oxide began at “laughing gas parties” primarily arranged for the British upper class in 1799 and has continued into modern times as the gas has become cheaper and more accessible to the masses. Today it is used worldwide by hospitals and dentists alike as a general anaesthetic.
It widely used in surgery and dentistry for its anesthetic and analgesic effects. It is known as “laughing gas” due to the euphoric effects that occur upon inhaling it, a property that has led to its recreational use as an atypical dissociative anesthetic. The duration of these effects is approximately 2 – 5 minutes in length.