Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — A company in Hà Nội’s Hoàng Mai District has recently been found selling nitrous oxide, known as laughing gas used to make “funky balls”, Tiền Phong (Vanguard) newspaper reported.
The so-called funky balls which are filled with nitrous oxide have recently inspired a “fever” among youngsters in Hà Nội for its recreational purposes. When youngsters inhale the gas from funky balloons, they have a feeling of euphoria.
The Hà Nội Surveillance Market Watch seized 17 containers with eight litres of nitrous oxide each and 613 balloons at Morning Star Industrial Gas Trading & Investing Company Limited.
The company could not prove origin of those confiscated items.
According to the market surveillance force, the company registered to run business on industrial gas but does not have business licence of chemicals in the list of limited sale.
The company director admitted making nitrous oxide for funky balls.
The legality surrounding the recreational use of balloons is a grey area. Many officials and doctors have called for action to be taken but there are legitimate reasons for manufacturing and selling nitrous oxide.
Balls can be easily purchased at bars, pubs, and even through Facebook pages. Balloons cost between VNĐ30,000-150,000 (US$1.3-7) each, depending on their size.
Doctor Nguyễn Anh Vũ, from the Hà Nội University of Science and Technology’s School of Chemical Engineering, said nitrous oxide creates an instant refreshing feeling, dizziness and blocks the nervous system, reducing the ability to think, distorting sound and even causing visual hallucinations.
A person exposed to nitrous oxide in a closed room or inhaling it directly would suffer from a lack of oxygen in their bloodstream, he said.
According to scientists, young women were advised to avoid exposure to nitrous oxide because it might lead to fertility problems. For a normal person, inhaling the laughing gas regularly could affect their nervous system, he said. — VNS