Inhalants Addiction

What are inhalants? Inhalants consist of a multitude of substances or products that can be breathed and ‘inhaled’ in, hence their name. There are four main varieties of inhalants: aerosols, gas, solvents, and nitrates. When inhaled, they give a high which is why inhalants are becoming increasingly abused, especially by the younger generation who can find household inhalants easily within their home. These substances tend to be readily available at an affordable cost on grocery store shelves which means people of any age can purchase them.

Popular Types of Inhalants

  • Permanent markers
  • Paint thinner
  • Glue
  • Spray paint
  • Lighter fluid

There are four varieties of inhalants: aerosols, volatile solvents, nitrite, and gases. These inhalants contain what is called psychoactive components which work to alter the mind and train of thought in those who use it.

Inhalants produce a short-lived high that generally only lasts several minutes at tops. Those who abuse inhalants inhale repeatedly in order to maintain a high which can go on for hours. Inhalants pose a unique danger to youth as they can easily access household inhalants by simply opening up their kitchen cabinet.

Inhalants Effect on the Brain

Inhalants work by attacking the central nervous system which in turn slows down the activity in the brain. As soon as an individual breathes in an inhalant, they can experience dizziness, slurred speech, and pleasure. Some people may not be tolerable to inhalants and therefore begin to vomit as a result. An individual can overdose on inhalants when they are taken in high doses. When taken in extremely high amounts, they can cause disorientation as well as dizziness. In some cases, individuals will suffer from what is called ‘sudden sniffing syndrome’, which can be fatal.

Health Effects of Inhalants

Prolonged use of inhalants can result in damage to bone marrow, delayed brain development, brain damage due to lack of oxygen, nerve damage, and kidney damage. Inhalants also have other adverse effects such as increased the sensation of sexual practices, therefore, pose a risk for people who have unprotected sex while high. People become addicted to inhalants because they give them the high they are craving while not costing as much as expensive drugs such as meth and cocaine.

Abusing Everyday Supplies

Many office supplies, personal care products, home maintenance products, cleaning products, and hobby supplies can be abused. Those who choose to abuse inhalants will gradually withdrawal from social activities with their former friends and begin to hang out with a new crowd of ‘users’. They will slowly begin to lose the friendships they once shared and start down a dangerous path of loneliness and isolation. When one is addicted to inhalants, it takes professional treatment and helps in order to overcome it.


Those who abuse inhalants will typically go through a psychological withdrawal rather than a physical withdrawal. They may get very irritable, edgy, and anxious when they cannot get a hold of an inhalant. This differs from other drugs that have physical withdrawals such as opiates.

Mixing Inhalants

Taking inhalants with other drugs is a recipe for disaster. Using inhalants with a depressant, such as alcohol, and put severe pressure on the body which it cannot candle. In turn, those who mix inhalants with depressants are at risk of suffocating or cardiac arrest.

If you or someone you love is addicted to inhalants or is experimenting with them, it’s time to seek help. WhiteSands Treatment can help those who are suffering from an addiction, obtain successful sobriety. Through proven treatment programs, addicts will learn to manage and overcome addiction. Contact us today to learn more.