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The dangerous effects of sniffing glue

Mthandazo Ndlovu

-Continued from last week

LOOKING at the effects of these substances, its quite interesting that our health and judicial systems have not looked at putting regulations and restrictions on the sale, and distribution, to minors of certain products that are commonly abused as inhalants.

Our system has to introduce fines, incarceration or mandatory treatment for sale distribution, use and or possession of inhalant chemicals, like other systems have to deter the rapid growth of such chemicals.

This is vital looking at the health implications upon the abuse of such has upon one’s health, the community they are in, overload of extreme cases to our health system, not talking of violent crimes, lives and properties lost. Also careers and gifts that die prematurely.

Of interest are inquiries that came in pertaining to the subject, just when we thought that only street kids abuse these chemicals, little did we know there are adult groups struggling with this as they say it gives them a quick high and a temporary escape from their problems, within the same bracket also are school kids, who spoke of easy accessibility of the chemicals and that they are cheap and they easily take them to school with no questions asked.

The inhaling of fumes from chemicals such as incense, oils, resins, spices and perfumes to alter consciousness, or as part of religious ceremonies dates back to ancient times in Egypt, Babylonia (present day Iraq), Indian and China.

According to researchers inhaling or gas vapours to alter one’s state of consciousness was practiced by the priestesses at the Oracle of Delphi in ancient Greece as the Greek believed that the god Apollo spoke to the priestesses through this oracle an ancient shrine .

In the early 1800s, nitrous oxide, ether and chloroform were the anaesthetics used commonly as intoxicants.

Nitrous oxide was regarded as a cheap substitute for alcohol and was popularised by the British scientist Sir Humphrey Davy. He held nitrous oxide parties and coined the word “laughing gas” in 1799. Noting the gases’ effects Davy proposed that the gas be used for operations.

Ether was used as a recreational drug during the 1920s Prohibition era, when alcohol was made illegal in the United States. In the 1940s recreational use of solvents, primarily gasoline became popular.

In the 1950s abuse of inhalants in the United States increased and now is so widespread among adolescents and we also have not been spared.

By the 1960s to present the sniffing of solvent sniffing has spread and a number of commercial products like paint, lacquer thinners have been abused.

Glue and gas sniffing have become popular among homeless children (street kids) around the globe, who use these inhalants to numb the pain of hunger, cold and desperation, not mindful of the after effects.

Let’s arise as communities and be pro- active save the future and help those caught in the inhalants web.

For more information and help call 00263772399734 or email mthae4jesus@gmail.com