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Huffing Essay, Research Paper

What is huffing?

The intentional breathing of gas or vapors with the purpose of reaching a high.

What does huffing do to the brain?

Changes the electrical activity of the brain. On a elecroencephalograpghy, (or EEG) the brain will show up as sharp impulses.

What toxic effects and the risks that occur with this practice on the body.

The brain: changes the electrical activity within the brain, possibly resulting in hallucinations and convulsions. Also the center of emotional behavior, is adversely affected during and after exposure to inhalants. Many inhalants are thought to dissolve the protective mylein sheath that surrounds neurons-brain cells- resulting in cell death.

Cerebral Cortex: cellular death here causes permanent personality changes, memory impairment, hallucinations and learning disabilities.

Cerebellum: This is the center that controls balance and coordination. Inhalant-related damage results in loss of coordination and slurred speech. Chronic abusers experience tremors and uncontrollable shaking.

Ophthalmic Nerve: Toluene may affect this nerve causing sight disorders.

The Blood: Some substances like nitrites and mthylene chloride (paint thinner) chemically block the oxygen carring capacity of the blood.

The Heart: Abuse of inhalants can result in sudden sniffing death syndrome . This is due to a sudden and unexpected disturbance of the heart s rhythm. All inhalants can produce sudden sniffing death syndrome.

The Lungs: Repeates use of spray paint as an inhalant can cause damage.

The Liver: Halogenated compounds like trichloroethylene ( a component of aerosol paints and correction fluid) have been linked to damage of this organ.

The Kidneys: Inhalants containing toluene impair the kidney s ability to control the amount of acid in the blood. This is reversible when toluene leaves the body but, in the long-term, kidney stones may develop.

Muscle: Chronic inhalant abuse can lead to muscle wasting. Reduced muscle tone and strength.

Bone Marrow: Benzene, a component of gasoline, has been shown to cause leukemia.

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