Teens, Tweens and Chemical Abuse

It’s not just the usual illicit drugs and abused prescriptions which parents need to be concerned about anymore. I’ve recently learned of several tragic incidents caused by middle school students “huffing.” Although the practice of abusing common chemicals found in products from glue to carpet cleaners to aerosol cans has been around for years, incidents involving young teens have dramatically increased. Here is some basic information for parents on this form of chemical abuse.
Inhalant abuse (huffing) is when people inhale chemical vapors to get high. The results can be debilitating and actually cause death. Today many household products are being used as inhalers. According to the National Drug Intelligence Center, a primary user group is 12-17 year olds. Inhalant users tend to include people that do not have access to other drugs or alcohol, such as children and teenagers.

Signs of Abuse
• Drunk or disoriented appearance
• Paint or other stains on face, hands, or clothing
• Hidden empty spray paint or solvent containers and chemical-soaked rags or clothing
• Slurred speech
• Strong chemical odors on breath or clothing
• Nausea or loss of appetite
• Red or runny nose
• Sores or rash around the nose or mouth

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4 Comments + Add Comment

  • If we pay attention to our kids actions we can learn SO much! Behavior speaks louder than words especially in middle school kids!! Great Post!

  • I received this comment when this post was in the SunSentinel Newspaper. Teachers that are doing a unit on drug/chemical awareness should find this site helpful.

    Thanks for posting this information. I’m the director of the National Inhalant Prevention Coalition. If anyone would like some free resources – please contact us through our website at http://www.inhalants.org
    Harvey Weiss

  • Thanks so much for your finding out and sharing such important information.

  • Just read this post update via Twitter and I understand this is back from April but this couldn’t go unsaid. I just saw recently a post locally there is a new drug that’s LEGAL called “Spice”. If you’ve already heard of this than my kids may be correct when they tell me I’m so behind the times….but I was shocked! Please research and pass this along. It’s so important to keep these kids safe!

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