Understanding Drug Abuse: Inhalants
While many drugs can be taken through various forms, inhalants refer specifically to those that are only ever inhaled (other uses are possible, but this is rare and generally not considered). Unlike other abused drugs, inhalants can be found around the house in regular items. Access to them is easy and can be unlimited. Here’s everything you need to know about inhalants.
What Are Common Inhalants?
The first type of inhalant is called a solvent, which is a liquid that turns into a vapor at room temperature. Paint thinners, glues, gasoline, and lighter fluid are solvents that can be found at home or in many workplaces. The second type is aerosols, which are sprays that include hair spray, spray paint, and even vegetable oil spray. The third are gases, some of which can be found at home and others that are in a professional setting. For example, propane tanks and whipped cream dispensers can be found in the home, but ether and nitrous oxide (laughing gas) is often found in workplaces that use anesthesia. Finally, the last inhalants are nitrates that are usually in bottles sold as cleaners for various items.
What Do Inhalants Do to the Body?
Inhalants have several common effects on the body. The central nervous system is usually the most affected, and physical results may appear as dizziness, a sudden lack of bodily movement, difficulty speaking, euphoria, light-headedness, and hallucinations. Other effects can be headaches, vomiting or nausea, and drowsiness. Nitrates have been shown to increase sexual stimulation.
How Can Inhalants Damage the Body?
Inhalants can lead to overuse and abuse that results in severe damage to the body. Abusers have been shown to suffer from brain issues that cause behavioral problems, brain damage, nerve damage that results in loss of bodily control, damage to the liver and kidneys, loss of hearing, and damage to bone marrow. In addition to that, those who abuse nitrates can lead to the spread of infectious diseases and unsafe sex. Inhalants can cause addiction and withdrawal symptoms.
Can You Overdose on Inhalants?
Like most things, moderation is key to health. It is possible to use too much of an inhalant, resulting in seizures and comas. Since many inhalants contain high concentrations of active chemicals, inhaling too much at once can stop the heart, even in a healthy person who has never used an inhalant before.
If you find you need help or have been caught with an inhalant, contact a criminal defense attorney like from the Morales Law Firm. They can help protect your rights and guide you toward the right path to recovery within the legal system.