'Huffing' Now a Growing Problem for Adults

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"Huffing," or inhaling household chemical vapors to get high, is a potentially deadly practice often associated with young people.

But a recent study by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration revealed that the practice is an even bigger problem among adults.

"Children and adolescents aren't the only ones abusing inhalants," said Dr. Jennifer Caudle of the American Osteopathic Association. "We know that a large percentage of people who abuse inhalants are adults, in fact."

Heath experts joined in Washington, D.C., to spread awareness about the dangerous addiction. The SAMHSA study found that more than 1 million adults were huffing in 2010.

"I had experimented, being a child of the 80s, growing up with alcohol and a couple of other minor things, but I had never had an addiction problem," said former huffing addict Erin Davis.

"And it was the first thing I thought about in the mornings and worked my whole day around it," she added. "I craved it physically and psychologically. It was all I cared about."

Long-term huffing and sniffing can lead to irreversible damage to the brain, lungs, liver, kidneys, and eyes.

Common household items like markers, glue, spray paint, and even cooking sprays are abused, according to the National Inhalant Prevention Coalition.

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