What Is the Worst Way to Ingest Drugs?

Whether snorted, smoked consumed or injected, drugs exert long-term, destructive effects on your brain, body and life. Favored by hardcore heroin, meth and coke addicts, injection provides the fastest, strongest effects by circumventing liver metabolism and making the bioavailability of the drug higher than drug consumption does. Unfortunately, this more intense, rapid-fire high leads to dependency quicker — and chronic addition.

Injecting drugs intravenously means psychoactive ingredients reach the brain within five seconds of the user pushing the drug into their vein. Injections also give users a powerfully euphoric sensation known as a “rush” they can’t get by smoking, snorting or eating their drug of choice. In addition, users don’t need as much heroin or meth to get high if they inject it. However, even though they spend less money on getting an “injection high,” this kind of high doesn’t last as long as a drug ingestion high.

More Reasons Why Injecting Is the Worst Way to Use Drugs

At a higher risk for suffering diseases specific to using needles, IV drug injectors frequently develop infected skin abscesses, thick scar tissue and blood-borne diseases such as hepatitis and HIV/AIDS from sharing needles with other infected users.

Injecting drugs also increases a user’s chance of overdosing. Shooting a syringe full of liquid drugs directly into the bloodstream means the user may start feeling high even before they have emptied the syringe. News reports of heroin and meth users overdosing with the needle still sticking out of their arm are horrifyingly common.

Ruptured arterial pseudoaneurysms forming at overused injection sites cause gangrene, hemorrhage and ischemia, a serious type of vascular disease producing interruptions in blood supplies to extremities, organs and tissues. When left untreated, ischemia leads to necrosis, or tissue death.

Drug Ingestion and Inhalants

Hardcore inhalant addicts don’t just simply “sniff” glue, gasoline or volatile hydrocarbons found in aerosol products. Instead, they saturate plastic baggies or absorbent cloths with the inhalant and “huff” the substance into their lungs. Huffing involves inhaling the gases deeply and rapidly without allowing any oxygen to enter the baggie.

Absorption of inhalant chemicals into the bloodstream is immediate. Effects of huffing inhalants can last up to several hours, depending on the type and concentration level of the inhalant. “Huffers” have suffocated to death by displacing oxygen in their lungs with toxic fumes and preventing air sacs from functioning properly. Aerosol spray cans contain chemicals that may permanently damage the brain, liver and kidneys (isobutane, propane, n-butane, dimethyl ether and nitrous oxide, just to name a few).

In fact, MRI scans of inhalers have shown that sniffing glue containing toluene, a solvent found in paint, paint thinners and cleaners, experience brain atrophy from inhaling toluene regularly for just six months.

Addiction Help Is Just a Phone Call Away

Regardless of a person’s drug ingestion method, the risk for addiction is nearly 100 percent, along with the potential for addicts to overdose or suffer chronic, sometimes deadly diseases. Whether you or someone you know is addicted to smoking marijuana, snorting cocaine, inhaling paint fumes or injecting heroin, 12 Keys provides a safe haven for people who need compassionate, comprehensive addiction treatment.

Start your new, sober life today by contacting 12 Keys Rehab any time, day or night.

The Addiction Blog