Smoking Alcohol? A Frightening New Trend

        I’m a bit disappointed because I had a great blog post all lined up for this week, but when I saw this article come across my desk, I knew it had to be addressed.  There is a new viral trend making its way around the Internet showing how to vaporize and smoke alcohol.

        I will pause here for a second to let the utter disbelief at the enormous consequences of that statement sink in.

A new trend is making it's way around the Internet. - NUB TV VIA YOUTUBE

                      A new trend is making its way around the Internet - NUB TV VIA YOUTUBE

       The videos on Youtube are garnering millions of hits so the chances are pretty high that your children or their friends have come across it at some point.  I would put the link here, but I refuse to add to the virility of these extremely dangerous and potentially harmful videos.  In an article from the Today Show, doctors warn of the dire effects, “smoking” alcohol can have. The fumes contain pure alcohol and, when inhaled, go straight to the user’s brain, causing an instant feeling of being drunk.  Why would anyone think is this is a good idea?  Substances like alcohol could have potential harmful side effects even if they are consumed the way they were meant to be.  To somehow alter that process could have very dire consequences.  Don’t take my word for it.  Here is a quote from one of the medical professionals in the Today Show article.

"The normal sensation when you drink and you are getting more drunk is to vomit: It's your body's way of expelling alcohol," explained Dr. Robert Glatter of Lenox Hill Hospital. “However, when you inhale alcohol, your brain has no way of expelling it." – Jeff Rossen and Josh Davis, “Dangerous viral trend threatens teens: ‘Smoking’ alcohol”, Today.com

        It is sad to see that people will go to such lengths and take such extreme risks to feel that temporary high.  It’s frightening for parents knowing these dangerous videos spreading are around the Internet like wildfire and their kids might be, and probably have been, exposed to it.  I’m not sure who comes up with these new ways of getting high, but I do know how we, as parents, can fight it.  We can’t possibly keep abreast of every new drug there is out there on the market or every new way people are finding to get high; the landscape changes much too quickly for that.  We need to teach our kids that their actions have consequences.  We need to stay as educated as we possibly can about the harmful side effects of drugs and alcohol so we can have intelligent conversations with our kids, rather than just saying “Because I said so!” 

A great resource to check your knowledge about drugs and alcohol is Parentchecknj.org, where you can take a short quiz to see how much you know about substance abuse and how to start a conversation about it.  Teens will always be bombarded with peer pressure, people will always come up with new and increasingly more dangerous ways of getting high, and parents won’t always be right on top of everything that’s going on. But with the right teaching and constant conversation, we have a fighting chance.

        Our ally, President and CEO of the Partnership at Drugfree.org, Steve Pasierb mentioned in his Today Show appearance that these videos “scare the hell” out of him.  It scares me too and serves as a reminder to all of us that we need to remain vigilant in the battle to keep our children on the path to a healthy lifestyle.

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