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Inhalants Powered By Docstoc

How to prevent inhalant use
         by youth
Summary of a report by Sherrie Sato
          What are inhalants?
• Chemicals that produce      • Adhesives: model
  psychoactive vapors that      glue, rubber cement,
  can be breathed.              nail polish
• There are four classes:     • Aerosols and food
• Solvents and gases: e.g.,     products: hair spray,
  shoe polish, correction       bug spray, cooking
  fluid, paint thinner,         spray, spray paint
  acetone, marking pens,
                              • Nitrates: nitrous oxide,
  gasoline, cleaning fluid
                                ether, chloroform,
                                freon, butane
           How are they used?
• Sniffing: inhale the
  chemical from the
  container or inhale
  through a straw into the
  aerosol can
• Huffing: sniff a rag soaked
  in the chemical
• Bagging: inhale the fumes
  from another container,
  such as a soda can, plastic
  bag or balloon
                                Huffing a soaked
                                rag in a plastic bag
              Who uses them?
• Younger teens and           • Youth using inhalants are:
  children, who are           • 3 times more likely to
• Less informed on the          smoke marijuana
  extreme dangers of this     • 4 times more likely to
• These are the only drugs      abuse prescription drugs
  easily accessible to them   • 7 times more likely to use
• They say they are curious     hallucinogens than are
  about urban legends re.       non-inhaling peers
  sniffing & huffing
                  Cause for concern
• “Inhalant and solvent         Brain Damage in a Toluene Sniffer
  abuse results in profound,
  permanent, irreversible
  brain and nervous system
  damage…Critical parts of
  the brain are literally
  dissolved, and functioning
  can never be restored.” (C.
  Falkowski, Hazelden           A. Normal brain    B. Inhalant user’s
  Foundation)                                         brain: note
                                                      lesions and
                                                      shrinkage (black)
  Cause for concern: Inhalants are:
• Easily accessible
• Not seen as harmful
• The third most likely
  substance a youth will try
  (after alcohol and tobacco)
• 4% of 6th graders have
  tried sniffing substances
• 9% of 8th-12th graders
• Only drug showing
  increases among 12th
  graders in 2006 ATOD
      How do Inhalants Work?
• The chemical is absorbed
  into the lungs, transferred to
  the blood stream and affects
  the brain in seconds, causing
  a head rush.
• Inhalants temporarily starve
  the body of oxygen
• The heart beats irregularly
  and rapidly
                                   Dark stained patches
• The high lasts a short time      show areas where nerve
  and the youth inhales more       fibers have lost their protective
  to sustain it                    sheath in a specimen of brain
                                    tissue removed from a deceased
                                    inhalant abuser . Note lesions.
Effects of using inhalants (1)
Effects of using inhalants
• Heart failure (sudden
  sniffing death can occur
  with first time use)
• Suffocation
• Chest pain, muscle and
  joint aches
• Double vision, jerky eye
• Nausea, vomiting, loss of
  appetite                    Johnson Bryant, 17, died
• Coughing, sneezing, nasal   after huffing the fumes from
  irritation, nosebleeds      two cans of butane. (CBS)
 Signs of Teen Use of Inhalants
• Runny nose;
• Red, watery eyes
• Rash around the nose and
• Paint or marker stains on face
• Poor muscle control
• Slurred speech
• Drunk or dazed appearance
• Memory loss
• Sever headaches
• Slowed breathing
             Emotional signs of use
• Manic activity
• Irritability
• Excitability
• Depression
• Anxiety
• Violent or unpredictable mood
• Suicidal thoughts and/or
                                      Parents grieving over the
• Indicators: odor of paint or        suicide death of their 14-year-old
  solvents; stains on face; bags or
                                      son, Rusty, who had been huffing
  rags, empty solvent containers
                                      for months, unknown to them.
                                      Photo by Jim Craven.

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