A recently released study reveals new dimensions and bucks old assumptions about inhalant use. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) study surveyed a sample group, ages 12 to 17, from 2006-2008. As the new data shows, youth suffering from respiratory ailments were not less likely than their healthy counterparts to abuse inhalants. With nearly one in tens diagnosed as asthmatic, this finding is particularly troubling. Overall, approximately 143,000 minors suffering from asthma, pneumonia, bronchitis, or sinusitis used inhalants last year.
The study also found:
- An unsettling 44,000 adolescents use inhalants on any given day.
- An estimated 1 million adolescents abuse inhalants every year.
- 4.4% of adolescents with respiratory problems versus 4.1% without use inhalants.
- Glue, gasoline, toluene(found in paint thinner), lighter fluid spray paints and shoe polish were among the top inhaled substances.
Past Year Inhalant Use among Adolescents:
- Aged 12 or 13: 4.1%
- Aged 14 or 15: 4.7%
- Aged 16 or 17: 3.5%
To view the findings or download the study, visit the SAMHSA website