Slang:Glue, Kick, Bang, Sniff, Huff,
Poppers, Whippets, Texas Shoe-Shine
Inhalants Are Second Most Popular Drug
Over one million youngsters aged 12-17 used
inhalants in the past year. Neither they nor their parents are aware
that sniffing could kill a child
using for the first time. Young adolescents
are engaging in potentially deadly substance abuse utilizing common
Today there are almost
a million new inhalant users, up from 390,000 in 1990. The National
Household Survey on Drug Abuse found that one in five youth report
having sniffed or huffed common household goods such as air fresheners,
cooking spray, markers and glue at least once in their lives to get
high. Surveys also find that parents often underestimate the use of
inhalants by their children and need to be constantly aware of their
children's activities and behavior.
Inhalants affect your brain.
Inhalants are substances or fumes from products such as glue or
paint thinner that are sniffed or "huffed" to cause an
immediate high. Because they affect your brain with much greater
speed and force than many other substances, they can cause irreversible
physical and mental damage before you know what's happened.
Inhalants affect your heart.
Inhalants starve the body of oxygen and force the heart to beat
irregularly and more rapidly--that can be dangerous for your body.
Inhalants damage other parts
of your body. People who use inhalants can lose their sense
of smell; experience nausea and nosebleeds; and develop liver, lung,
and kidney problems. Chronic use can lead to muscle wasting and
reduced muscle tone and strength.
Inhalants can cause sudden
death. Inhalants can kill you instantly. Inhalant users can
die by suffocation, choking on their vomit, or having a heart attack.
Get the facts. Inhalants
can kill you the very first time you use them.
Stay informed. Inhalants
include a large group of chemicals that are found in such household
products as aerosol sprays, cleaning fluids, glue, paint, paint
thinner, gasoline, propane, nail polish remover, correction fluid,
and marker pens. None of these are safe to inhale-they all can kill
Be aware. Chemicals
like amyl nitrate and isobutyl nitrate ("poppers"), and
nitrous oxide ("whippets") are often sold at concerts
and dance clubs. They can permanently damage your body and brain.
Know the risks.
Chronic inhalant abusers may permanently lose the ability
to perform everyday functions like walking, talking, and thinking.
How can you tell if a friend is using inhalants?
Sometimes it's tough to tell. But there are signs you can
look for. If your friend has one or more of the following
warning signs, he or she may be using inhalants:
"Drunk, dizzy, or dazed appearance
"Unusual breath odor
"Chemical smell on clothing
"Paint stains on body or face
Questions and Answers about huffing
Q. Since inhalants are found
in household products, aren't they safe?
A. No. Even though household products
like glue and air freshener have legal, useful purposes, when they
are used as inhalants they are harmful and dangerous. These products
are not intended to be inhaled.
Q. Doesn't it take many "huffs"
before you're in danger?
A. No. One "huff" of an
inhalant can kill you, or the 10th, or the 100th. Every huff can
be dangerous. Even if you have huffed before without experiencing
a problem, there's no way of knowing how the next huff will affect
Q. Can inhalants make me lose
A. Yes. Inhalants affect your brain
and can cause you to suddenly engage in violent, or even deadly,
behavior. You could hurt yourself or the people you love.
If you suspect your teen or someone you know is huffing
seek help before they cause serious damage to themselves.
Call now for information on placement options
for your loved one. 1-800-781-8081
More information about huffing:
Inhalants are legal, everyday products whose vapors or gas can be
intentionally inhaled to get high. Inhalants include ether, glue,
chloroform, nitrous oxide, gasoline, and paint thinner. Use of inhalants
among adolescents aged 12 to 17 is a concern because inhalants generally
can be legally obtained and use can result in brain damage or death.
Inhalants are volatile substances that produce chemical
vapors that can be inhaled to induce a psychoactive, or mind-altering,
effect. Although other abused substances can be inhaled, the term
"inhalants" is used to describe a variety of substances
whose main common characteristic is that they are rarely, if ever,
taken by any route other than inhalation. This definition encompasses
a broad range of chemicals found in hundreds of different products
that may have different pharmacological effects. As a result, precise
categorization of inhalants is difficult. One classification system
lists four general categories of inhalants-volatile solvents, aerosol,
gases, and nitrites-based on the form in which they are often found
in household, industrial, and medical products.
are liquids that vaporize at room temperatures. They are found in
a multitude of inexpensive, easily available products used for common
household and industrial purposes. These include paint thinners
and removers, dry-cleaning fluids, degreasers, gasoline, glues,
correction fluids, and felt-tip marker fluids.
Aerosols are sprays
that contain propellants and solvents. They include spray paints,
deodorant and hair sprays, vegetable oil sprays for cooking, and
fabric protector sprays.
Gases include medical
anesthetics as well as gases used in household or commercial products.
Medical anesthetic gases include ether, chloroform, halothane, and
nitrous oxide, commonly called "laughing gas." Nitrous
oxide is the most abused of these gases and can be found in whipped
cream dispensers and products that boost octane levels in racing
cars. Household or commercial products containing gases include
butane lighters, propane tanks, whipped cream dispensers, and refrigerants.
Nitrites often are
considered a special class of inhalants. Unlike most other inhalants,
which act directly on the central nervous system (CNS), nitrites
act primarily to dilate blood vessels and relax the muscles. And
while other inhalants are used to alter mood, nitrites are used
primarily as sexual enhancers. Nitrites include cyclohexyl nitrite,
isoamyl (amyl) nitrite, and isobutyl (butyl) nitrite. Cyclohexyl
nitrite is found in room odorizers. Amyl nitrite is used in certain
diagnostic procedures and is prescribed to some patients for heart
pain. Illegally diverted ampules of amyl nitrite are called "poppers"
or "snappers" on the street. Butyl nitrite is an illegal
substance that is often packaged and sold in small bottles also
referred to as "poppers."
Some information above was obtained from SAMHSA
is An Agency of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services