Sniffing or Huffing Gasoline Vapors...What Every Parent Should Know
This behavior is almost as old as the use of gasoline is in mainstream culture. Gasoline vapors, when inhaled, can trigger an intense hallucinogenic state. The person who inhaled the vapors may experience what feels
very much like being asleep and dreaming - while remaining fully awake and somewhat aware of his or her surroundings. Because the individual remains somewhat aware, breaking free from the hallucinogenic state is comparable to waking up from sleep. If they hear, feel, taste, smell, or even sense something in their close proximity - they can generally "snap" back into a somewhat dulled sense of reality. This intense hallucinogenic state generally only lasts a few minutes at a time, and the induction of oxygen back into the body helps to clear the effects faster.
Unlike other strong hallucinogenic inducing chemicals, gasoline vapors very rarely cause a "bad trip". This, coupled with the short term effects of the inhalant, make inhaling the vapors a very popular behavior for adolescents and teens. Gasoline is also readily available, and can be obtained for free - simply by taking the cap or lid off any gas tank - anywhere. Because the adolescent or teen is able to "snap out" of the effects of the drug almost as easily as waking up from sleep, the chances of getting caught are less. They need no paraphernalia of any kind, they need simply the ability to breathe, and access to gasoline.