How to Stay Well | Prevention Resource Center

Laughing Gas is No Laughing Matter Say Volunteers from the Amsterdam Chapter of Foundation for a Drug-Free World

Raising awareness of the dangers of taking nitrous oxide as a recreational drug.

Volunteers from Foundation for a Drug-Free World are traveling through the Netherlands, reaching out to parents about a dangerous drug that has become very popular among teens. The drug is laughing gas, or nitrous oxide. Its consequences can be dire and are often seriously underestimated by users, according to Gerbrig Deinum, spokesperson for the group.

“Over the past two years, more than 60 young people who have been using nitrous oxide as a recreational drug have reported physical problems that are similar to those of patients who have sustained spinal cord injury,” Deinum says. “Nurses have spoken about young people arriving at the hospital in wheelchairs, unable to stand or walk.”

Neurological damage from this drug can include paralysis says Ingrid, chairman of the Amsterdam chapter of Foundation for a Drug-Free World. She is all-too-aware of what it is like to live with this kind of injury. An accident that caused similar damage to her spinal cord left her in a wheelchair. 

“We are under no illusion that handing out flyers will overcome this problem by itself,” says Deinum. “But we hope that our campaign will begin a discussion about the consequences of laughing gas and drugs in general.” The volunteers want to make drug education compulsory in Netherlands schools because when young people understand what drugs are and what they do they can make the self-determined decision to live drug-free.

Foundation for a Drug-Free World has developed a full curriculum for use in drug education. This includes free drug education courses that are available on their website in 20 languages. Young people, educators, parents and community leaders are invited to take the courses.

Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard said, “Research has demonstrated that the single most destructive element present in our current culture is drugs.” 

To reverse drug trends and accomplish the Church’s greater humanitarian objectives, Scientology ecclesiastical leader Mr. David Miscavige set forth a strategy to raise awareness, educate and activate millions of voices for a better world. One such campaign is the Truth About Drugs initiative of Foundation for a Drug-Free World. He ensured the campaign’s informational components would be available, free of charge, to all who request them.

Foundation for a Drug-Free World Netherlands is supported by the Church of Scientology Amsterdam. For more information, visit the Foundation for a Drug-Free World website.

The Scientology religion was founded by author and philosopher L. Ron Hubbard. The first Church of Scientology was formed in Los Angeles in 1954 and the religion has expanded to more than 11,000 Churches, Missions and affiliated groups, with millions of members in 167 countries.

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