My limited personal experience with nitrous oxide, i.e., one mildly pleasant dentist appointment 30+ years ago and a couple of barely memorable party-related episodes involving cans of whipped cream around the same time, always made me think it was nothing to write home about.
However, this summer I noticed that several music festival websites prominently mention "no nitrous" or "no glass, no nitrous". The latter, especially (i.e., mentioning it in the breath as meth) makes me think there is some danger that I'm not aware of. (Thanks to Breaking Bad, I assume that "glass" does not refer to glass containers.) BTW - I did NOT notice any posts warning against LSD, ecstasy, mushrooms, etc.
My daughter, who spent the summer at festivals, told me that people who try to sell meth at festivals are risking a beating from otherwise peaceful festival "hippies" (a term she uses with respect, btw, not a hint of irony or derision in her voice) - she says that this is not true for those who sell nitrous.
So, why the emphasis on "no nitrous" by festival promoters?
A couple of final comments:
- I understand prolonged exposure can be risky, which is why my dentist doesn't use it.
- Demi Moore's trip to the ER several months ago, which she denies was related to nitrous oxide use, generated a lot of press on the subject, but nothing that really answers this question. I KNOW that inhaling nitrous oxide is not GOOD for you, but neither is alcohol, pot, or Cherry Garcia.