March 20, 2005
Inhalant use is typically not a concern for most parents, as use of alcohol and marijuana are much more predominant. However, in Illinois, 4.2 percent of 8th graders have used Inhalants in the past 30 days, whereas in Will County, 6.0 percent of 8th graders report using Inhalants in the past 30 days (Illinois Youth Survey, 2002). Inhalants are a very real cause for concern, and parents should talk to their children about the dangers of inhalants at an early age.
Developmentally, pre-adolescents and adolescents are risk takers. There are plenty of ways for teens and pre-teens to take risks in healthy ways; sports, academic achievement, and hobbies. However, there are also lots of dangerous activities our kids can find themselves involved in if we as parents aren't careful to monitor their free time and their friends.
One of those dangerous activities is use of inhalants, or "huffing". "Huffing" is the abuse of household products in order to get a "high". It is also one of those unusual illicit activities that more males than females engage in and peaks in 8th grade, declining in later years. Recent statistics state that one in five students in America has used an inhalant to get high by the time he or she reaches the eighth grade.
Common products used as inhalants include: Adhesives model airplane glue, rubber cement, household glue Aerosols (spray paint, hairspray, air freshener, deodorant, fabric protector), Solvents and gases (nail polish remover, paint thinner, type correction fluid and thinner, toxic markers, pure toluene, cigar lighter fluid, gasoline, carburetor cleaner, octane booster), Cleaning agents (dry cleaning fluid, spot remover, degreaser) Food products (vegetable cooking spray, dessert topping spray (whipped cream), whippets), Gases (nitrous oxide, butane, propane, helium), Anesthetic (nitrous oxide, ether, chloroform), Amyl ("Poppers," "Snappers" Butyl "Rush," "Locker room," "Bolt," "Climax," also marketed in head shops as "video head cleaner"). Some other important facts to know include:
Charles B. Pelkie
(815) 530-7110 (cellular)
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