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Inhalan ( Inhalants )

Solven-solven organic, nitrous oxide, nitrite, aerosol, glue, gam, bahan yang berasaskan solven penghapus pengilat kuku, cecair pemetik api, gasoline, cat dan penyembur rambut adalah jenis-jenis inhalan yang disalahgunakan.

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Gam, petrol dan inhalan yang lain walaupun tidak perlu dibeli di pasaran haram, juga boleh menghasilkan kesan sampingan seperti dadah apabila disalahgunakan. Kekerapan menghidu gam atau petrol boleh mengkhayalkan pengguna dan menyebabkan seseorang itu ketagihan.

Kini kerajaan Malaysia dalam proses menggubal akta bahan menghkayalkan agar gejala penyalahgunaan bahan seperti ini dapat ditangani.

Kesan-Kesan Pengambilan
Percakapan yang tidak jelas, tiada koordinasi, pening, muntah dan pernafasan yang perlahan. Ianya juga boleh menyebabkan kerosakan otak, otot-otot dan sendi, masalah hati, kerosakan urat saraf, keletihan, hilang selera makan, meragam di luar kawalan, luka pada hidung atau mulut, hidung berdarah, cirit birit, pening, tingkahlaku ganjl atau berani dan kematian mengejut.

Inhalants

Inhalants are common products found in the home and are among the most popular and deadly substances abused by teens. Inhalants are breathable chemical vapors that produce psychoactive (mind-altering) effects. Although people are exposed to volatile solvents and other inhalants at home and in the workplace, many do not think that the substances as drugs because most of them were never meant to be used as stimulants.

Inhalant abuse can result in death even from the very first use. Inhalants are use by sniffing from an inhalant-soaked rag or inhaling the substance inside a paper or plastic bag; “snorting” fumes from containers; spraying aerosols directly into the mouth or nose.
Young people are likely to abuse inhalants because inhalants are readily available and inexpensive. Parents should see that these substances are monitored closely so that children do not abuse them.

Inhalants fall into the following categories:

Solvents

* industrial or household solvents or solvent-containing products, including paint thinners or solvents, degreasers (dry-cleaning fluids), gasoline, and glues
* art or office supply solvents, including correction fluids, felt-tip-marker fluid, and electronic contact cleaners

Gases

* gases used in household or commercial products, including butane lighters and propane tanks, whipping cream aerosols or dispensers (whippets), and refrigerant gases
* household aerosol propellants and associated solvents in items such as spray paints, hair or deodorant sprays, and fabric protector sprays
* medical anesthetic gases, such as ether, chloroform, halothane, and nitrous oxide (laughing gas)

Nitrites

* aliphatic nitrites, including cyclohexyl nitrite, which is available to the general public.

Health Effects and Risks
Inhalants produce effects similar to anesthetics, which act to slow down the body’s functions. When inhaled in sufficient concentrations, it can cause intoxicating effects that can last from a few minutes to several hours if inhalants are taken repeatedly. Initially, users may feel slightly stimulated; with successive inhalations, they may feel less inhibited and less in control; finally, a user can lose consciousness.

Signs of Depression
Research shows that inhalant use is also associated with symptoms of depression. Research showed that depressed teens were more than three times as likely to start using inhalants as teens with no symptoms of depression.

Irreversible hazards
Inhalants are toxic in nature. Chronic exposure can lead to brain damage or nerve damage similar to multiple sclerosis; damage to the heart, lungs, liver and kidneys and prolonged abuse can affect thinking, movement, vision and hearing.

Sniffing highly concentrated amounts of the chemicals in solvents or aerosol sprays can directly induce heart failure and death. Heart failure results from the chemicals interfering with the heart’s rhythm regulating system, causing the heart to stop beating. This is especially common from the abuse of fluorocarbons and butane-type gases. High concentrations of inhalants also cause death from asphyxiation, suffocation, convulsions or seizures, coma, choking or fatal injury from accidents while intoxicated.

Other irreversible effects caused by inhaling specific solvents are:

* Hearing loss – toluene (paint sprays, glues, de-waxers) and trichloroethylene (cleaning fluids, correction fluids)
* Peripheral neuropathies or limb spasms – hexane (glues, gasoline) and nitrous oxide (whipping cream, gas cylinders)
* Central nervous system or brain damage – toluene (paint sprays, glues, de-waxers)
* Bone marrow damage – benzene (gasoline)
* Liver and kidney damage – toluene- containing substances and chlorinated hydrocarbons (correction fluids, dry-cleaning fluids)
* Blood oxygen depletion – organic nitrites (“poppers,” “bold,” and “rush”) and methylene chloride (varnish removers, paint thinners)

Prevention
Parents can keep their teens away from inhalants by talking to them and letting them know the dangers of inhalants. Most young users don’t realize how dangerous inhalants can be. Inhalants are widely available and inexpensive and parents should be mindful about how and where they store common household products.

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