You probably haven’t heard of Dewshine. It’s a mixture of Mountain Dew and gasoline. Yes, that’s right – the soft drink plus fuel for your car. Two teens in Tennessee came up with the brew as a way to get a cheap high. The teens are now dead and two others were taken to the emergency room.
Dewshine has mostly methanol in it, which is a form of alcohol used in industrial vehicles and automobiles. To be clear, it is not the same form of alcohol found in beer, wine, and liquor. According to an article in US News, methanol is poisonous in even small amounts. For an infant, methanol would be deadly, as it was for two of the adolescents who drank the mixture. Additionally, those who drank Dewshine might have experienced severe headaches, blurred vision, rapid or deep breathing, drowsiness and confusion, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, or blindness, depending on the amount used. Perhaps these symptoms aren’t worth the cheap high they initially hoped for.
In fact, a cheap high often is not cheap at all. For instance, those who are addicted to prescription drugs often turn to heroin as a cheaper alternative. In some parts of the country, bundles of glassine bags can sell for as low as $3, which can then be sold elsewhere for $10. Whether its $3 or $10, the cost is incredibly cheap, making it attractive and easily accessible. Yet in the long run, the use of substances that appear cheap can later require the costs of hospitalization, addiction treatment, rent at a sober living facility, and can even cost one their life. Cheap highs aren’t cheap if they later require ongoing medical and psychological care.
The same is true with inhalants. An inhalant is any substance that can be turned into a chemical vapor, which is inhaled by users to get high. There are many household products that can be used as inhalants, which is why this type substance use can be challenging to control. Inhalants provide a very short high, lasting from 15-30 minutes. For this reason, a person is likely to repeatedly use them. According to the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), there are at least 18 million people have tried inhalants at least once in their lifetime.
Like Dewshine, the products that people use to get high sound astronomical. Instead of gasoline, they may inhale cleaning solutions, correction fluids, degreasers, deodorant sprays, felt markers, hair spray, leather cleaners, or nail polish remover. And just like the symptoms listed above for drinking Dewshine, those who ingest inhalants can experience a variety of unfortunate symptoms. These include:
- Distorted thinking
- Increased heart rate
- Loss of consciousness
- Loss of coordination
- Loss of sensation
- Slurred speech
If you or someone you know is brewing something with dangerous compounds, such as fluid, be aware that it could cost you your life. A cheap high may not be so cheap in the end.
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