What are whip its?

What are Whip Its?

With the hospitalization of Demi Moore last year from reportedly having “seizure-like” symptoms due to nitrous oxide; whip its have been making a comeback. Whip its, or nitrous oxide canisters can be bought at Wal-Mart or in any kitchen section as well as in head shops. Nitrous oxide could just be extracted for a Reddi-Whip can too. Most people use the nitrous oxide canisters to make whipped cream, people who want to party though, inhale them for a very brief but very euphoric high.

So what is nitrous oxide? (Better known as whip its)

Nitrous oxide is characterized as an inhalant drug, used by those who like to “huff” chemicals. This would be better known as inhalant abuse. What nitrous oxide or as it is called by those who abuse it “whip its” do is they give a quick high that is accompanied by dizziness, a lack of coordination, and slurred speech. Since the effect of whip its is very brief many users tend to inhale it again and again, and this increases the euphoric effects.

One of the other slang terms for whip its is hippie crack. Whip its can be sold in small individual canisters or by entire tanks. Whip its are legal to purchase although illegal in many states if you plan to use them as a recreational drug which is why whip its are regulated by the Food and Drug administration and not the Drug Enforcement Agency. Nitrous oxide or whip its as a drug comes in many forms of inhalants including solvents and gasoline.

Like most drugs of course, whip its are not good for you. Whip its can cause hearing loss, liver and kidney damage, limb spasms, central nervous system or brain damage, brain marrow damage, heart failure, and suffocation. There is even a syndrome associated with whip its known as the “sudden sniffing death” or put simply “sudden death”. Whip its also can cause side effects that are very similar to frostbite.

And who uses whip its?

Young people seem to be drawn to inhalants in general just because they are so easy to obtain and can be found around the house. Whip its fall into that because they are so widely available. In 2011, 719,000 people aged 12 or older reported using inhalants for the first time within the prior twelve months according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Most of those users were under the age of18 when they first tried whip its. The average age for first use of whip its is around 16. A lot of the times whip its are sold in balloons at rock concerts.

Dentists also use “whip its” or rather nitrous oxide and if you are familiar with nitrous oxide you probably know it as laughing gas if you have never done a whip it. Whip its though aren’t quite the same as what you get at the dentist’s office. At the dentist’s office the dentist carefully monitors the amount of oxygen mixed in with the nitrous to make sure it’s safe.  Here is a fun fact though: many dental associations have been formed to make treatment programs for dentists who get addicted to their own nitrous oxide.

Whip its may seem like fun and they may seem especially safe because they are so easy to buy and get but the truth is whip its are really dangerous and can lead many people into an addiction they don’t know how to get out of.

Inhalant drug abuse

Inhalant drug abuse

Inhalant drug abuse

Inhalant drug abuse is known as the abuse of chemical inhalants to achieve a feeling of euphoria, intoxication, or in other words a “high”. Inhalant drug abuse is better known as “huffing” for the way in which the chemical inhalants are used. There are thousands of commercial, household, and medical products that can use for huffing or inhalant drug abuse. Inhalant drug abuse can become addicting although its more grave effects are permanent brain damage, organ damage or even sudden death.

Inhalant drug abuse is extremely popular among younger teens and children. Huffing or inhalant drug abuse is an extremely common form of getting “high. Inhalant drug abuse or huffing is the fourth common abused substance used by young teens or children from grades 8-12 right after alcohol, marijuana, and cigarettes. Around 17 million Americans have experienced inhalant drug abuse or huffed at least once in their lives and by 8th grade one in five young teens or children has experimented with inhalant drug abuse at least once.

There are multiple types of different chemical inhalants that can be used for huffing. Inhalant drug abuse can be explained for being so common by the ease and availability in which each inhalant can be found. The types of inhalants that are used for huffing can be separated into four different categories: Gases, nitrates, aerosols, and volatile solvents. All of these categories of inhalants when used severely affect the central nervous system of a person. Some of the most common volatile solvents for inhalant drug abuse are but not limited to:

  • Dry cleaning fluid
  • Felt tip markers
  • Gasoline
  • Glue
  • Paint remover and Paint thinner

Some of the aerosols which are more common around the household kitchen etc. that are used for inhalant drug abuse are but not limited to:

  • Spray deodorant
  • Spray paint
  • Vegetable oil cooking spray
  • Hair spray

Gases are probably the hardest to acquire for those who are huffing. Some of the gases that are used for inhalant drug abuse are but not limited to:

  • Nitrous Oxide also known as “whip its”
  • Butane (lighters)
  • Whip Cream containers which also contain nitrous oxide
  • Ether
  • Chloroform
  • Propane

Almost all of these chemicals used for inhalant drug abuse cause intoxication and euphoria. Nitrates are an exception with huffers or inhalant drug abusers describing huffing nitrates as increasing sexual function and/or sensations. Some nitrates can be found in household products but most are prescribed or illegal. For instance some nitrates used for inhalant drug abuse are but not limited to:

  • Cyclohexyl nitrate (room deodorizers)
  • Butyl nitrate (illegal street drug)
  • Isoamyl/amyl nitrate (prescription drug for heart pain) These are also sold on the street and are known as “poppers”

The way inhalant drug abuse works is the chemicals listed above are inhaled and absorbed through the lungs and from there move throughout the body and into the brain within minutes. The person due to inhalant drug abuse may experience slurred speech, act dizzy or drunk, and euphoria. Inhalant drug abuse only last for a few minutes or even seconds. There are multiple health risks that come along with inhalant drug abuse of huffing and they are but not limited to:

  • Attention problems
  • Brain and nervous system damage
  • Death by choking
  • Death by suffocation
  • Delirium
  • Muscle weakness
  • Dementia
  • Spasticity
  • Impaired judgment
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Fatal accidents

Inhalant drug abuse can be extremely dangerous and even fatal. Sometimes a person due to inhalant use can “huff” once and die. This is known as a sniffing death or sudden death due to huffing inhalants.

Inhalant drug abuse is something that is not widely recognized as being a problem it is good to get the facts and to be educated especially if you children.