Inhaling Alcohol Takes Binge Drinking To A New and Dangerous Level

In my Link Love Friday post a few weeks ago I highlighted a story about a man who found a way to get a buzz from alcohol without all of the calories.  I may have made light of the man’s viral YouTube video that showed the process he used to ‘smoke’ his booze rather than drink it, but it’s not a laughing matter.

More and more young people are finding their way to the hospital emergency room, or worse – the county morgue – as a result of this new low-calorie fad.

Flickr photo by Photoloni

Flickr photo by Photoloni

Broderick Allen of Texas gets credit for the increasing popularity of the alcohol smoking craze.  After Allen lost 80 pounds he wanted to find a way to enjoy alcohol without the risk of gaining the weight back and he figured out a way to do it.  Not only that, he decided to share his discovery by creating a YouTube video that shows how he uses dry ice to vaporize the alcohol and then inhales or ‘huffs’ it directly into his lungs.

Someone that smokes alcohol may think they’re getting a calorie-free drunk, but they are getting more than that.  Inhaling alcohol vapors can result in lung damage, extreme intoxication, alcohol poisoning and even death.  And, the real kicker is medical professionals say you still get some of the calories from the booze.

Binge Drinking on Steroids

Doctors and researchers say the technique of huffing alcoholic is far more dangerous than consuming it the old-fashion way.  Gaylord Lopez, director of the Georgia Poison Center, told WSB-TV, Atlanta that “Smoking alcohol is like a night of binge-drinking in an instant” and it comes with the risk of alcohol overdose and a potential for brain damage.

Plus consuming alcohol through the lungs won’t fool a breathalyzer device and may put the user at an ever higher risk of being charged with Driving Under the Influence if they get pulled over after inhaling their drinks.  Because the alcohol is not processed by the liver and goes directly to the brain, drunkenness and intoxication occur at a more rapid rate making the concentration of alcohol in the blood higher.

The fad is most popular with underage teens that want to consume alcohol without their parents or other adults finding out, and it is a growing trend among college students.

Tell A Friend

While there are advocates that want the alcohol vaporization process to be outlawed, there isn’t clear agreement on exactly how or if that could happen.  In the meantime, education is the best defense against this alarming social trend.  If you have a teen or young adult, make sure they know and understand the risks associated with this practice and spread the word among your friends and parents of young adults so they can have a conversation about this lethal fad with their children as well.

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