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Inhalant Addiction Treatment and Huffing Intervention

Psst. Your 6th grader or 9th grader may have a secret. And it’s not engaging in premarital sex or smoking marijuana.

It’s called huffing, and it could be as innocuous as a few cans of pressurized whipped cream.

Called whippets, people, notably the very young, inhale the nitrous oxide (laughing gas) that is charged to shoot out Reddi Whip and other products.

It’s a cheap high, which unfortunately can damage organs and even kill people.

What is inhalant addiction, and how do people find inhalant rehab?

Inhalant addiction is generally classified as any product that is legal to buy, but can be misused through either sniffing or inhaling.

Examples include:

  • Airplane glue
  • Spray paint
  • Hair Spray
  • Deodarant air fresheners
  • Fabric spray
  • PC Cleaners
  • Gasoline

and more.

The sheer volume of inhalants and the fact that typically the cost is a couple of dollars, and the fact that no dealer is involved, are part of the web that makes inhalants so dangerous.

And the fact that there are no “safe” ways to inhale inhalants, nor any kind of government standards on how much to use without either endangering yourself physically as well as psychologically, makes inhalants sort of the wild west of “getting high,”

Another part of inhalants for a few, (perhaps as low as 5 percent or so but never the less a sizeable portion of the 750,000 new inhalant users each year)

One inhalant addiction center estimated 140,000 people per year become addicted to inhalants.

Are there good inhalant treatment programs?

Yes, there are, but it is important to go deeper into treatment modalities with regard to inhalant rehab.

First, because inhalant addiction can occur to youngsters as young as 12, parents and guardians may need to look around for a good treatment program.

Many counselors and treatment professionals are excellent at treating people with drug and alcohol use, but are simply not equipped to deal with young adults.

A good inhalant treatment program should have psychologists and doctors on staff that are prepared to deal with young adults who have developing brains, and may not process typical cognitive therapy approaches in the same way.

There are a lot of scary videos on YouTube on the dangers of huffing, including personal int

One of the reasons for this besides their age, is many of their problems are different. Adults with alcohol and drug problems may have relationship problems, job and financial problems and other triggers which spurred their addiction.

Those with inhalant addictions may not even have a boyfriend or a girlfriend, let alone a marriage to deal with, or a failed career.

While this is not to say that those who do become addicted to inhalants do not have problems, rarely did they turn to huffing because of problems at home or school.

Instead, they chose to experiment with inhalants because they wanted to experience getting high, and once they did get high from inhalants. they continued to “play with the dragon” so to speak, until the inhalants bit back.

There are often detox symptoms

Like any other addiction, there often are difficult detox problems to deal with as well, as irritability, nausea, tremors, and seizures.

Detox alone, may take several weeks and is not something that young people should attempt alone.

An inpatient inhalant detox may several weeks, and should not be attempted at home. There are simply too many temptations at home including other substances such as alcohol.


There are a lot of YouTube videos on YouTube, including those featuring interviews from people who sniffed paint, gasoline, glue and other inhalants.

But the best video we found concerning inhalants is actually produced by an agency that trains agencies dealing with inhalants addiction. They produced an entire 1-hour comprehensive video on the subject.

You can find the video here It’s probably the most comprehensive video on the net on inhalants, without all the graphic videos of people lying in the hospital with an incubator.

How to find a good inhalant treatment program

By all means if your child has more than a mere bit of experiment with inhalants, they will need an inpatient inhalant program.

Questions to ask include:

  • How often will my child see a medical doctor?
  • What are the age range of the people in the program
  • Are there psychologists on staff that are familiar with teen brains, behaviors and challenges?
  • What are the exact procedures for detox?
  • What are the counselor qualifications?

Final thoughts on Inhalant Addiction Treatment

Inhalant addiction is one of the hardest addictions to treat and the least known of treatment modalities.

In order to treat inhalant addition, your child will need a lot of love and support, but that support will not come easily.

Before they are ready to really integrate with the family again, they are going to need the support of trained doctors, psychologists, counselors, and even their peers who seriously want to get off the huffing merry-go-round.

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