Woman warns after ‘laughing gas’ addiction landed her on a wheelchair

A woman has shared a horrific experience of “abusing” nitroxide oxide (NOS), commonly known as laughing gas, that put her in a wheelchair. Kerry-Anne Donaldson, 26, is unable to use her legs from a laughing gas addiction that saw her use 600 canisters a week, she said.

She stated that she first started using NOS at parties when she was 18, and gradually increased her usage.

The former receptionist, from Newham, East London is now dependent on her wheelchair to get around.

She cannot walk without any help, reported The Mirror.

She told the publication: “When I was 21 one morning I couldn’t use my legs or hands.

“I didn’t even realise what I was taking, it wasn’t until the doctors told me at the hospital that I knew it was nitrous oxide.

“I was uneducated on the subject and had no idea about the damage.”

She was later admitted to the hospital and was required to use a wheelchair and crutches for a few months.

Speaking about her first hospital visit in 2020, Kerry-Anne said: “The doctor asked if I had taken anything.

“So I was honest and told him I had been using canisters and balloons.

“That’s when he informed me what was in them – nitrous oxide – and told me about the effects.

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“He said the reason I’m in pain and unable to walk is because of the damage it causes.

“It blocks oxygen from going around your body and to your brain and destroys your vitamin B12 levels.

“It was very shocking when the doctor told me that. I didn’t think inhaling a balloon could cause so much damage.

“At that moment I felt a bit stupid, I never thought something so small could cause so much damage.

“I should have known what I was taking before I took it instead of assuming it wouldn’t do me any harm like it has.”

Kerry-Anne’s legs began to feel numb again in early 2021 so she decided to quit the substance.

The incident now pushed her to back the stringent rules to make nitrous oxide a class-C drug, which would make possession illegal.

After two months of “deep depression”, Kerry-Anne decided to post a TikTok warning others about her experience with nitrous oxide.

She said: “The TikTok went viral, I had so many people reach out who wanted to help and talk.

“From then I decided to make something good happen and turn a negative situation into a positive one.

“I think it would definitely be a good idea to ban it.

“I know the catering industry uses it professionally so we need to think about a way to not impact that industry too much.

“But overall it’s impacted so many people’s lives, and there’s not enough awareness out there about what it can do to you.”