Drugfree.org reports that college students who are concerned about their calorie intake or who are looking for a different and more intense buzz are now inhaling alcohol. In this dangerous new way to consume alcohol, people are pouring the booze over dry ice and “smoking” it, which can cause a dangerous reaction in the body if too much is consumed.
Some college students are experimenting with inhaling alcohol by pouring it over dry ice and “smoking” the vapors, according to an expert who says the practice is dangerous.
Young adults are inhaling alcohol to get high without ingesting calories, the Daily News reports.
Dr. Harris Stratyner, Regional Clinical Vice President of Caron Treatment Centers in New York, told the newspaper, “When you inhale alcohol, it goes directly into the lungs and circumnavigates the liver. The liver is what metabolizes alcohol, but when you inhale it, it goes directly from the lungs to the brain.”
The practice is more likely to lead to deadly alcohol poisoning than drinking liquor, he said. Inhaling alcohol vapors can dry out the nasal passages and mouth, making a person more susceptible to infection, Stratyner added.
“One of the things that prevents alcohol poisoning is that you usually vomit,” he noted. “When you circumvent the stomach and go straight to the lungs, you don’t have that ability.”
Inhaling alcohol has become more popular in the past year and a half, Stratyner said. “This is a stupid, highly dangerous thing to do. The fact that youngsters in particular can purchase the equipment for a relatively cheap price…this has to be made illegal.”
It is also reported, by the Daily News, that a company is selling a device to make the process of inhaling alcohol easier.
In January, Chicago bar Red Kiva hosted a “freebasing alcohol” event featuring a device called the Vaportini, which retails for $30 plus shipping. Users heat a small amount of alcohol in a glass ball over a tea light, then suck the resulting vapors through a straw.
With summer beginning, it’s important to take the opportunity to talk with your kids about the dangers of alcohol and drug consumption, and new trends that are popping up around substance abuse. Keep your kids safe, be honest and real about the dangers of substance use and the potential consequences of using drugs and alcohol.