Aftermath in NC - Friend's Teen-ager Huffing Keyboard Cleaner Spray

After the disturbing IM that my daughter's friend had overdosed last night - I tried to pull some information out of my daughter. She was so distraught that it was hard to calm her down enough to ask her questions. X has been a very close friend to her since they were little, they have almost grown up together.

For about an hour after the IM, we had no information - and couldnt get ahold of anyone. During that time I checked with the two local hospitals to see if "X" had been admitted. The answer was "no", so we took that as good news.

About an hour later, X drove up and parked his car in front of his family's house! My daughter ran out to him to just check him and make sure he was alright, and to express her deep concern.

X said - he had been at his Dad's (parents are divorced), was feeling extra depressed, and huffed the spray that is used to clean computer keyboards. You've probably heard about kids doing that, but who would ever think that a smart kid who is well off and who is well liked would be drawn to do such a thing? Well, teen-agers are vulnerable, they really are.

X got sick from the huffing, and his dad (where he was visiting that night) took him to a local hospital - where X was checked out and released.

Today is X's birthday.

X told my daughter that he is now color blind, or at least today he is. He asked her - what color are my clothes! His mother and step dad were not home, nor his brother, so I wonder if they even know about his close call to death.

You see, some kids die the very first time they try huffing any inhalent. Others suffer brain damage. X suffered damage to his optical nerve.

There is alot of information about the dangers of Inhalent abuse at the National Inhalent Prevention Coalition.

I am telling you this story because if this could happen to the "boy next door", it could happen to anyone, your kid, or your neighbor's kid, or your kid's friends.

Life is precious, and teenagers are so vulnerable.

We can't put a wall around our kids, or get rid of all dangers. Instead, we must innoculate our kids with coping mechanisms so that when they feel backed into a wall, they can deal, instead of hurting themselves.

Comments

Good that it's staying out front longer ...

Before I started life as a public school teacher I did a year and a half at an outdoor treatment program. I was the math teacher. We had to account for our white board markers at all times and lock them up at the end of the day.
Whether suffering troubles or just the idiocy brought on by an underdeveloped prefrontal lobe, to some kids any high will do. "Consequences", what are "consequences"??
Thank you for sharing this.

If you'll allow me to add ...
Damn near anything can be huffed - just about any aerosol food type item (ala Readi-whip), gasoline can be sniffed, turpentine etc.

I actively oppose gerrymandering. Do you?

just to clarify...

...you reference two different types of getting high, and one is not actually huffing.

the inhalants you reference-with one exception-and others like them use propellants and what might be considered "emulsifiers" (chemicals that keep the gold paint flecks in areosol suspension, for example) that are benzene, or something similar, which is extraordinarily dangerous and toxic. (starter fluid contains ether, and is another particularly nasty inhalant)

ehtyl acetate and other similar chemicals (which i suspect were present in your markers) are additionally mutagenic.

this would be huffing.

redi-whip, on the other hand, uses nitrous oxide as a propellant.
while this can cause death, those who die usually do so from lack of oxygen (often associated with the foolish use of a tank in a confined space or the use of a mask while inhaling) or burns (often from the same cause).

as you may recall, dentists also use nitrous in medical procedures.
it is not highly toxic.
like the other inhalants, it is highly flammable.

of course it should not be used foolishly, but in comparison the hazard is orders of magnitude less than the hazards associated with benzene and the other inhalants.

it is hazardous to inhale the non-food grade nitrous oxide associated with racing, and that's another reason to stay away from this practice generally.

of course, the bigger question-why did this happen?

first time experiment gone badly wrong, or is it something deeper-and maybe this wasn't the first time?
hopefully the parents can have a chance to take stock of the situation...and hopefully they are as able to talk to their son and work things out in a positive way.

"...i feel that if a person can't communicate, the very least he can do is to shut up." --tom lehrer, january 1965

my daughter said - "too many of my friends have died"

he is the veritable boy next door, making enviable grades, well to do family, popular, nice looking, personable, and a close friend of my daughters.

My daughter said to me today - "too many of my friends have died."

It is amazing - when I was a kid, these sorts of things were infrequent - they happened, but they were unusual.

The dead kid next door.

When I grew up, it was drunk driving. Everyone had someone in their school that had met a tree at a high rate of speed after driving drunk. There seemed to be a lot of traction to stop drunk driving, I don't know how that is going now.

With the price of heroin coming down because of Afghanistan's record crop production every year, things will only get worse. Afghanistan now produces more poppy in one year than the world used to produce before 9/11.

The United Nations is to release figures for drug production in Afghanistan that will show another reverse for the British-led effort to control the drug trade.

The Daily Telegraph understands that annual production is expected to have risen by 18 per cent to about 7,200 tons - the sixth consecutive rise since 2001.

It is estimated that 95 per cent of the heroin sold in Britain is produced in Afghanistan.

Western officials in Kabul say drug farmers and smugglers work with corrupt government officials and the Taliban in a trade worth more than £1.5 billion - about 40 per cent of the whole Afghan economy.

One of the pitfalls of childhood is that one doesn't have to understand something to feel it. - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.
-me

It's common

apparently.

I asked my son about after I read this post. His response. "Kids do it all the time. It's stupid."

I do remember having to show the cashier my i.d. to buy spray paint at wal-mart. I guess that's why.


Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

Dayum woman

Do you get carded for alcohol too?

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.



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Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Hah!

Not in a long long time.


Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

you may also find new restrictions...

...on your ability to purchase sudafed and similar products in large quantity as well, which is related to the desire to control the manufacture of methamphetamine.

"...i feel that if a person can't communicate, the very least he can do is to shut up." --tom lehrer, january 1965