More kids get high huffing legal substances than by ingesting marijuana, cocaine and hallucinogens combined.
So says a recent report from the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
The study finds:
- 7 percent of 12 year olds sniff inhalants.
- By comparison, only 1.4 percent of 12 year olds admit using marijuana, 0.7 percent trip on hallucinogens and 0.1 percent snort or smoke cocaine.
- The primary age group of huffers is 12 - 17.
So, where are they getting the shit? At home, of course. . . .
Glue, gasoline, hairspray, spray paint and aerosol cleaners in pantries and garages can each do the trick.
Researchers found young 'uns like inhalants because they are cheap and available, but few are aware of the dangers of getting high this way.
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Besides a euphoria similar to an alcohol buzz, abusers can experience dizziness, confusion, lack of coordination, slurred speech, delusions, headache, and nausea. Heavy duty huffing can lead to brain impairment, cardiac arrest and central nervous system damage.
Health experts say death can occur the first time someone huffs. And it's highly addictive thereafter. Young huffers may require substance abuse counseling to kick the habit.
Warning signs parents can look out for include hidden containers, chemical odors on breath and clothing and paint or other stains on face, hands and/or clothing.
On the bright side, maybe Little Joey isn't a tagger after all!