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Propylhexedrine Addiction

Propylhexedrine Abuse

propylhexedrine addiction

People who struggle with getting high will look just about anywhere to get their fix, which means that any substance on the market could become the target of abuse. The Federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) can put guidelines and safeguards in place, but when people are struggling with addiction they often defy these rules without even realizing it, and bad things will happen.

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Addiction is a very strong force that moves people to try anything, even eating bizarre substances such as cotton. One great motivating force when it comes to drugs is access. If a substance is inexpensive and easy to obtain legally, there is a greater chance someone is going to try to use it for non- medical purposes. There are plenty of substances on the market that, when taken in high doses or in combination with other drugs, produce an out-of- your-mind feeling that kids are curious about and addicts crave.

Propylhexedrine is a stimulant meant to be inhaled for relief of nasal congestion. It is marketed under the brand name Benzedrex and is available without a prescription in most drugstores. Addiction rates of propylhexedrine are hard to track because it is lumped into the stimulant category, but according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, 6.5% of all treatment program admissions were related to stimulant abuse and a measurable portion of those involved propylhexedrine.

Benzedrex Abuse

Propylhexedrine abuse was documented as far back as 1949 when it replaced amphetamine in nasal decongestant inhalers. The switch was made, ironically, to reduce amphetamine abuse. Benzedrex is readily available and very inexpensive — two facts that attract recreational drug users.

However, it is almost impossible to overdose on an inhaler - the method through which propylhexedrine produces a high. An inhaler is designed to contain the medicine in a piece of cotton so air can be forced across it and release vapors for inhalation.

benzedrex abuse

To consume propylhexedrine in larger doses than recommended, drug users break open the inhaler and take out the cotton wick which is saturated with the drug. They then go through an elaborate procedure to separate the drug from the cotton. Some end up actually swallowing the cotton. Others soak it in a beverage and then strain the cotton before drinking.

Manufacturers add eucalyptus, menthol, camphor and other ingredients to Benzedrex to give it a pleasant odor and increase the decongestant effect. Recreational drug users who abuse propylhexedrine end up ingesting these other substances along with the drug. This could account for reports of a nasty taste. Propylhexedrine abuse is sometimes referred to as eating cotton. The cotton itself can cause bowel obstructions and lead to serious problems.

The Effects of a Propylhexedrine High

Thanks to the Internet, anyone can access anecdotal information about recreational drug use. Now you don’t have to know someone who has tried drugs or go to places where recreational drug abusers hang out to get a firsthand account. The availability of this information makes recreational drug use seem more mainstream and acceptable since it is being discussed in the open. On a positive note, people sharing their bad experiences can prevent others from repeating those mistakes.

Most of the anecdotal evidence on the propylhexedrine high is unpleasant. Users report a dirty high combined with very unpleasant tastes and odors from ingesting the substance and the camphor, eucalyptus and menthol it is infused with. Some say the taste recurs for hours, providing a definite deterrent from using the drug again. The high is described as fleeting, coupled with anxiety and paranoia, and followed quickly by a terrible crash. The withdrawal process has been compared to that of meth.

If you are not familiar with the sensation, keep in mind that methamphetamine is a highly addictive central nervous system stimulant. There is no medication available to counteract meth withdrawal symptoms. People who are addicted to meth fight very hard to break that addiction.

Propylhexedrine vs. Adderall

Propylhexedrine is believed to increase focus in adults, although it is not listed by any official source as a treatment for Attention Deficit Disorder. Students who typically abuse drugs in an effort to increase their mental performance have been known to try propylhexedrine, possibly because it is so inexpensive and readily available. The information available on this type of use is thin and mostly anecdotal.

Adderall is a brand name for amphetamine, a highly addictive stimulant that has had many medical uses over the years. Adderall is often prescribed for Attention Deficit Disorder and narcolepsy. It stimulates brain function, speeding up the message transmission process.

Propylhexedrine and Adderall are similar in that both are stimulants and can have a calming effect on individuals with Attention Deficit Disorder, helping them to focus their thoughts and be more productive and organized. Adderall is only available with a prescription, while propylhexedrine can be legally purchased in any drug store right over the counter.

If you have a problem concentrating and suspect you could benefit from medical intervention, you should talk to your doctor. He or she can help you through methods that are both safe and legal. It is never a good idea to self- medicate with someone else’s prescription or by ignoring the dosing instructions on over-the-counter drugs. Just because your roommate has figured out a formula that works for him doesn’t mean it will work for you, and you could be exposing yourself to serious health risks.

How Propylhexedrine Works

While its chemical make-up is structurally similar to methamphetamine, propylhexedrine is not an amphetamine. Propylhexedrine works on brain chemicals, specifically dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin, and has the result of stimulating certain types of messages. This is why at certain doses Benzedrex can make people feel more focused and energetic.

However, Propylhexedrine is also a vasoconstrictor, which is one of its properties that helps reduce inflammation in the nasal passages and relieves congestion. Constricting blood vessels, especially at high doses of the medication, can have serious cardiovascular side effects. The heart has to work harder to move blood through vessels that are constricted. If there are any small obstructions in the vessels, it is possible to create a complete blockage when constricted.

benzedrex abuse

Depending on age and health, there is a limit to how hard the heart can work before giving out. Think of how you feel when you run up hill. You may be able to tolerate the increased exertion of running at a steady pace for a set amount of time. But if your course suddenly takes you up an incline, your heart beats faster and you begin to pant at the extra power needed. Once you get to the top of the hill and the course levels off again you are ok. But if that incline had been any longer or any steeper, you might have had to stop.

An overdose of propylhexedrine constricts your blood vessels, putting extra pressure on your heart. You have no control over how long this condition lasts, so you can’t stop in the middle of this hill to catch your breath. Your heart will continue to work to move the blood through your body until it can’t do it anymore. Then, it just stops.

Benzedrex Abuse Side Effects

When taken according to package instructions, propylhexedrine has few side effects. Users might experience burning, stinging, sneezing and a runny nose. These are all tolerable and limited because when you inhale Benzedrex, the drug is acting topically on the nasal passages. Very little, if any, gets into the major body systems to cause systemic reactions. It generally doesn’t get past the surfaces it comes in contact with.

Abusing propylhexedrine changes all of the parameters because it puts the drug into systems in the body where it wasn’t meant to go. By ingesting the Benzedrex cotton, the user multiplies the dosage and introduces it to the digestive tract, which leads into the bloodstream.

Some of the effects a user might feel when ingesting a large dose of propylhexedrine include:

  • Headache
  • Intoxication
  • Disorientation
  • Changes in mood
  • Reduced appetite

An overdose of Benzedrex could result in these side effects:

  • Diarrhea
  • Heart attack
  • Hallucinations
  • Stroke
  • Loss of brain function
  • Vomiting
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Confusion
  • Coma

As with many drugs, propylhexedrine can be harmless and effective when taken according to the package instructions. When abused, however, it can be deadly. The key is knowing how much is too much. Each individual should allow medical professionals to make that judgement. Once you break into that cheap inhaler and start experimenting with Benzedrex, you could quickly end up in serious trouble.

Signs of Propylhexedrine Abuse

Signs of drug abuse are always there if you know what to look for, and they are quite similar no matter what substance is being abused. Many recreational drug users even combine substances, taking them at the same time or randomly abusing different substances and adding alcohol to the mix.

benzedrex abuse side effects

Drug abusers usually exhibit some if not all of these behaviors:

  • Isolation — avoiding friends or social situations or developing new friendships but keeping them secret.
  • Financial struggles — constantly short on money with no sign of where it is being spent.
  • Insomnia — can be drug-related or due to the stress of keeping secrets and scoring the next high.
  • Moodiness — changing from happy to sad and back again rather quickly.
  • Weight loss — noticeable loss of weight without new diet or exercise routine.
  • Defensive — quick to anger and wanting to fight.
  • Loss of Productivity — not keeping up at work or school.

Drug abuse develops for many reasons, often resulting in addiction which escalates the abuse. Abusing a so-called non- addictive substance or one that is considered safe, does not mean a person is not in danger. In some ways, feeling like the abuse is OK because the drug is supposed to be safe just exacerbates the problem because it is allowed to go unchecked for too long.

Possibly the most vulnerable people to Benzedrex abuse are teenagers. It is an inexpensive drug and young people are generally more daring than others. They have yet to fully develop the part of their brains that understands mortality. Since a large dose is needed and the inhaler must be taken apart to ingest it, there are additional signs you could look for. Broken inhalers or empty packaging in the trash might indicate your teen is experimenting with propylhexedrine. Also, bits of cotton that have a brownish tinge being saved or stored somewhere in a teen’s room or book bag is another sign.

Although there are a limited number of statistics about propylhexedrine abuse, it is a serious problem. Anyone who would go through the required steps, endure the foul taste and risk digestive complications by swallowing cotton is desperate to get high. That person may have developed their desire to be high on other drugs and is now just experimenting with a cheaper alternative. The addiction itself doesn’t have to be to Benzedrex. Abusing any drug is a sign of trouble.

propylhexedrine abuse treatment

If you or someone you love is abusing propylhexedrine, help is available. Drug abuse and addiction are closely linked, and even if you think the drug of choice is not that harmful, you must recognize the bigger picture. The desire to seek a chemically induced euphoric state is a sign of trouble. The willingness to jeopardize your health and life for this euphoria is at the heart of addiction.

Substance abuse is extremely damaging — physically and emotionally. People are hurt, families torn apart, and careers ended when addiction enters the picture. Contact 12 Keys so we can help you fight for sober, happy living. We can help you put the pieces back together. Our individualized programs meet your current needs, whatever they are, and bring you through to recovery. We help people build healthy, happy, substance-free lives every day. Let us help you.

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