How Can A Supervised Detox Help Withdrawal From Inhalants?

The nature of drug addiction treatment often varies depending upon the substance used. Detox from certain substances requires more aggressive intervention than others. Amongst such products are inhalants.


Inhalants are a collection of materials containing chemicals producing highs after the abuser inhales the substance. These products include:

  • Gases like propane
  • Cleaning solvents
  • Chemical nitrites such as those employed for medical purposes
  • Aerosol sprays like air fresheners

The most troubling aspect of these drugs is their availability and the ease with which prospective users can access them. Many such products are commonly used household cleaning agents found in garages and pantries. Moreover, aerosol products are inexpensive and routinely sold in supermarkets, general stores, and pharmacy chains.

Furthermore, purchase of the majority of these materials are not subject to age limitations or any other restrictions.

Typical Method Usage

Individuals usually ingest the fumes elicited by substances through their nose or mouth. Commonly used street terminology referencing inhaling, includes huffing, bagging, sniffing, and snorting.

Systemic Impact

Inhalants first influence a user’s central nervous system. These products induce a calmness similar to alcohol intoxication. Significant ingestion might also precipitate hallucinations and a euphoric feeling. That said, the seemingly pleasurable impacts are short-lived and addicts must ultimately intake greater concentrations to elicit desired outcomes.

Unfortunately, overdosing can occur. Said event could result in coma, seizures, respiratory and cardiovascular system collapse, and possibly even immediate death.

Additionally, inhalants significantly impact other pertinent bodily tracts. Researchers have concluded that, over time, chronic abusers are at a heightened risk of developing:

  • Kidney diseases
  • Liver damage
  • Declining cognitive skills like memory and focus
  • Irreversible nerve damage
  • Bone marrow destruction
  • Brain damage

Other relatively common occurrences includes hearing loss and hand tremors.

Withdrawal Symptoms

Surprisingly, not every inhalant abuser will experience the physical or mental manifestations of withdrawal. However, when said symptoms do appear, they are often moderate to severe and present through incidents of anxiety, depression, nausea, vomiting, insomnia, mood swings, irritability, and tiredness.

Withdrawal symptoms often commence anywhere between one to two days after the addict ingested their last dose.

The Importance Of Detox

Detox from inhalants often must occur inside a treatment center possessing experience treating subjects with this addiction.

Addition specialists maintain that inhalant detox often proves more challenging than the systemic elimination of other substances. Typically, this is because inhalable substances tend to linger in numerous bodily tissues.

In many instances, appreciable amounts of various inhalant chemicals are not only found in brain tissues but in those situated inside the heart, lungs, muscles, and liver. Ergo, complete bodily eradication could take up to several weeks.

The Detox Process

Currently, there is no specific medically-approved inhalant detox protocol. Efforts typically focus on easing withdrawal symptoms as they appear and giving the body the time it needs to flush the offending chemicals out.

That said, healthcare providers and addiction professionals strongly caution recovering addicts to undergo this process in a strictly supervised environment like an inpatient rehabilitation clinic.

Those with moderate to serious addictions are believed to be at an increased risk of encountering major, potentially life-impeding withdrawal manifestations like seizures. Stricken subjects stand a far greater chance of surviving said events when they are under the watchful eye of experienced medical and addiction professionals.

Following chemical detoxification, healing souls will likely face the associated mental manifestations. Experienced treatment specialists will help those battling inhalant addictions cope with potential pitfalls, such as cravings, temptations, learning to adjust to sobriety, and reentry into the civilian world.

Important Considerations

Recovering addicts are implored to first obtain a full medical evaluation prior to entering rehab. Inhalants can and often do precipitate serious and possibly irreversible internal bodily damage. Such issues could complicate the detox process or place the individual in question’s health in greater peril.

Additionally, industry insiders opine that inhalant abusers are also more likely to experience psychological or mental issues necessitating aggressive therapy. Therefore, said subjects are often better suited to undergo detox and subsequent rehab inside facilities capable of addressing all associated concerns.

Contacting Us

We invite those currently experiencing an inhalant addiction or the family members of such persons to consider enrolling in one of our inpatient treatment programs.

Our Columbus, Ohio-situated facility possesses extensive experience working with inhalant dependents and boasts an impressive record of helping said souls beat this addiction. For more information, please contact us at 833-820-2922.