US Children are Huffing

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According to a new study from the US Department of Health and Human Services, inhalants have become the drug of choice.

According to the study, using data collected from 2006-08 surveys on drug use and health, more 12-year olds admit to using inhalants to get high than prescription medications, marijuana, cocaine and hallucinogens. Alcohol, on other hand, is the only other substance used more among the age group.

Huffing is the act of inhaling vapours to get high. Children huff such common household products as gasoline, nail polish, bleach, paint solvents, and cleaning sprays making it a difficult problem to combat.

Huffing can cause cardiac arrest, lead to brain, heart, liver kidney damage, and addiction.

The recent survey revealed that about 7 percent of 12-year olds used inhalants to get high, compared to 5 percent who used prescription medications, 1.4 percent who used marijuana, and less than 1 percent who used cocaine and hallucinogens.

The percentage of youth using inhalants has remained steady over recent years.

There is also a perception, experts say, that they are not dangerous to use. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, from 2001 to 2009 the number of 8th graders who believed inhalants were risky dropped from 75 percent to 58 percent.

A dangerous trend, they say, as where there is a lower perception of risk, there is increased use.

Consequently, inhalants will be the target of a new public education campaign, aimed at youth and their parents.

Source: The National Post

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US Children are Huffing

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