Author: John Carter

Inhalant Abuse Facts and Symptoms

inhalant abuse symptoms

Inhalants, like other addictive substances, have a strong effect on the brain reward system. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), all Inhalants have a potential for dependence. That means people can develop an addiction to Inhalants. You can email the site owner to let them know you were blocked.

The ease of hiding Inhalant abuse is one likely reason why these substances are commonly abused by teenagers. Inhaling solvents can cause your heart to beat irregularly, too fast, or too hard. Inhalants can cause brain damage by blocking oxygen flow to your brain and other organs. The best way to help prevent inhalant abuse is to talk to your child about it early on. Do not assume that your child knows what it is or that it’s wrong. Talk to your child about the dangers and risks of trying inhalants and drugs.

It may be hard to determine if an addiction to Inhalants exists. However, there are criteria established that are used to diagnose this addiction. Two or more of the 11 symptoms of a substance use disorder as outlined by the DSM must be present in order to diagnose the condition.

The Dangers Of Inhalants

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The effects of inhalant abuse are usually felt within seconds and dissipate within 10 minutes or less. Treatment methods for inhalant abuse do not differ much from those used to treat addictive behavior. These treatments include individual therapy (cognitive behavioral therapy), family therapy, activity and engagement programs, and aftercare (including support groups). When individuals abuse inhalants, they breathe them in through the nose or mouth in a variety of ways. They may sniff or snort fumes from a container or dispenser, spray aerosols directly into the nose or mouth, or place a chemical-soaked rag over the mouth or nose.

Inhalants can be used by inhaling the substance directly, or inhaling vapors via a soaked rag to get high. When they inhale or “huff” the inhalant they are using, they almost immediately feel intoxicated and experience effects similar to a drunken state. A diagnostic test doesn’t confirm that a patient is abusing inhalants.

Inhalants are not detected by routine urine drug screenings, so detection relies on the clinical diagnosis of knowledgeable medical professionals. Clinical testing can show abnormal laboratory results, such as elevated liver enzymes. Blood and other tissues can be tested by gas chromatography technique. Specific urine tests can trace benzene, toluene, and other similar substances when they are abused over a long period of time.

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  2. Specific urine tests can trace benzene, toluene, and other similar substances when they are abused over a long period of time.
  3. Inhalants can cause heart failure and respiratory distress, which could result in a fatal overdose even with the first use.

They commonly feel tired and unwell and lack energy, focus, and motivation, worsening grades, and work performance. Prevention strategies are the best way to prevent inhalant abuse. Community-based prevention educational efforts should include types of inhalants and products. People who use inhalants may display symptoms similar to alcohol intoxication, including slurred speech, stumbling, staggering when walking, nausea, and headache. Treatment for an addiction to Inhalants may include behavioral therapy, support groups, 12-step programs, or inpatient rehabilitation programs.

How common is inhalant addiction?

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inhalant abuse symptoms

The symptoms are painful and the damage is described as similar to neurological diseases like multiple sclerosis. Inhalants are made from dangerous chemicals that no one should be exposed to over a period time. Because of this, there is no such thing as safe inhalant use. When people use inhalants, they risk heart attacks, painful nerve damage, and irreversible brain damage. Inhalants are popular among teens and preteens as a means to experiment with drugs and get high. Typically abused inhalants include harmful chemicals such as acetone, butane, propane, fluorocarbons, ethyl chloride and nitrous oxide.

Consumer Substances Commonly Abused as Inhalants2

Minimize or avoid excess storage of things like paint thinners, gasoline, oven cleaner, spray paints, and other things you don’t need on a regular basis. There are many short-term and long-term complications caused by abusing inhalants. Individuals often attempt to achieve the high again, but tolerance builds after prolonged use.

Teens who have more severe inhalant abuse may best be treated in a residential treatment program. Nitrites are chemical compounds found in leather cleaner, liquid aroma and room deodorizers. The ability of nitrites to relax smooth muscle has made their use popular for sexual enhancement. Nitrites include cyclohexyl nitrite, isoamyl (amyl) nitrite, and isobutyl (butyl) nitrite. We may receive advertising fees if you follow links to promoted online therapy websites.

Where can I get help for inhalant abuse?

Inhalant abuse can lead to many short-term side effects that are similar to being drunk. After inhaling the chemical, a user may exhibit slurred speech or have trouble with their balance. They seem disoriented and have trouble holding a conversation.

A mental health professional, such as a psychiatrist, psychologist, or licensed alcohol and drug counselor, may be called for a psychiatric evaluation. Most mental health professionals use the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), which is considered the standard for diagnosing mental disorders. Get professional help from an online addiction and mental health counselor from BetterHelp. The short-term and long-term health effects can be devastating or even deadly. If you think you have a problem with inhalants, you’re not alone!