Communication is prevention. That’s why ACE’s inhalant abuse prevention program focuses on education.
Our support resources are intended to facilitate conversations that help children and teens understand the dangers of inhalant abuse, as well as provide tools to help resist peer pressure.
Tips for Talking to Children (6 to 11-year-olds)
Discuss the purpose of common household products. Emphasize that when they are not used appropriately, certain fumes or gases may harm the body and cause illness.
- Discuss what fumes are and what effects they can have on a healthy body.
- Play a game - “Is it safe to smell or touch?”
- Read product labels together, discuss directions, and answer any questions honestly.
- Suggest opening windows or using fans when products call for proper ventilation.
- Teach by example - show your child that you use household products according to the directions.
- Monitor your child’s activities and friends.
- Look for “teachable moments.”
Talk Tough with Teens
According to national surveys, more than two million kids aged 12 to 17 have used some form of an inhalant to get high.
- Ask your teen what he or she knows about inhalants.
- Does your teen have friends who abuse inhalants?
- Ask if he or she knows about the physical damage that can occur from “sniffing.”
- Tell your teen that the consequences of abusing products can be as dangerous as those from abusing alcohol or using illegal drugs.
- Let your teen know that sniffing products to get high is not the way to fit in.
- Encourage your teen to talk to you, a teacher, religious figure, counselor, coach, or any other credible source.
- Monitor your teen's activities, know his or her friends, be a good listener, and set limits.
- Seize communication opportunities.
In Case of Emergency
If you find your child unconscious or you suspect your child is under the influence of an inhalant:
- Call 911 immediately.
- Keep the child calm to reduce cardiac stress.
- Try to determine the source of the inhalant so the medical professionals can help more quickly.
If you suspect your child might be abusing inhalants, call your poison control center at 1-800-222-1222 or the 1-800 number on the product label.
Inhalant Abuse Recovery
Recovery is possible, and it is important to seek help for yourself or a loved one immediately. To find a treatment center in your area, visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's (SAMHSA) Behavioral Health Treatment Services Locator.
Need online support? Visit the Inhalant Abuse Messageboard to ask questions, get information, and find support regarding inhalant abuse from peers across the country.
Supporting a Friend
Connect with others that have lost their loved ones, learn how to support a friend, or get more information for yourself.
The Alliance for Consumer Education has created an external messageboard that averages 100,000 active monthly users. Read real stories about abuse, what is really happening after school, at home and everywhere in-between.
Poison Control Center
Emergency / Poison Control
If you have an emergency situation, please contact your local poison control center.
Local Poison Control Centers
Visit the American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC) website or call 1-800-222-1222
America’s 57 poison centers are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Just one number, 1-800-222-1222, will connect you to your local poison center. Call for information or during poisoning emergencies to get immediate advice from specially trained nurses, pharmacists, toxicologists, and other experts.
Calls are free and confidential.
The AAPCC is a non-profit, national organization founded in 1958. The AAPCC represents the poison control centers of the United States and the interests of poison prevention and treatment of poisoning.
ACE is a proud member of the Poison Prevention Week Council.