Drug Education Discusses the Dangers of Inhalants

by Mike Miller October 29, 2013

As a kid we thought it was really funny to do “whippets.” Do you know what those are? We used to go into the grocery store and suck out all the gas in a can of whipped cream. The buzz lasted for a minute or two. Today’s inhalants are much more lethal, and the problem is getting worse and is starting with children as young as age 10!

Data from national and state surveys suggest that inhalant abuse is most common among 7th through 9th graders. The study found that the nation's secondary school students, 8th graders regularly report the highest rate of current, past-year and lifetime inhalant abuse compared to 10th and 12th graders. As reported in www.lcsun-news.com.

Inhalants are chemical vapors found in paints, glues, gasoline, nail polish remover, aerosols, markers and cleaning fluids that people inhale on purpose to get high.

The impact of inhalants on the human body is not good. Prolonged sniffing of highly concentrated chemicals in solvents or aerosol sprays can cause irregular or rapid heart rhythms and can lead to heart failure and death within minutes. High concentrations of inhalants also can cause death from suffocation when the inhalant vapor takes the place of oxygen in the lungs and brain, causing breathing to stop. While high on inhalants, people also can die by choking on their own vomit or by fatal injury from accidents. Regular abuse of inhalants can also cause serious harm to vital organs and the brain.

I would recommend mandatory drug educational classes beginning in about 5th grade. Perhaps the school could add an internet based drug course as part of the curriculum in school.

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