Inhalants: Mental effects

Last modified: Sunday, 31. May 2009 - 4:34 pm

Inhalants deliver their mind-altering effects very quickly, satisfying the desires of users looking for instant gratification. The effects, depending on the inhalant, last from several seconds to several hours.
Abusers initially feel happy, giddy, excited, and uninhibited. After these immediate effects wear off, they may feel lightheaded, dizzy, drowsy, or agitated. They may hallucinate, have delusions, and/or experience a loss of sensation or of “feeling no pain.” Concentrated doses can cause confusion and delirium.
Some users try to extend the brief high by sniffing repeatedly over a few hours, a practice that increases the risks of unconsciousness and death.
With time, regular abusers may experience personality and mental changes, including loss of short-term memory and difficulties with attention and learning. They can become apathetic and belligerent, and exhibit poor judgment in personal and work situations. Over the long term, inhalant abusers may display disorientation, inattentiveness, and irritability. They may also suffer from depression.

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