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    Posted September 16, 2012 by

    'Shamboiling': The Newest Drug Trend Among Teens.


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     This iReport has not been verified by CNN. We contacted the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the American Association of Poison Control Centers and the National Inhalant Abuse Prevention Coalition and none of them had heard of 'shamboiling.' But they all agreed that using any household product to get high is incredibly dangerous. Inhalant abuse can cause permanent brain damage, hearing loss and coordination problems, serious liver and kidney damage, suffocation, seizures, loss of consciousness and even death.
    - davidw, CNN iReport producer

    "Parents, lock up your shower supplies."
    While this may sound like a joke, this is an actual quote from an announcement made last week at a middle school just outside of Richmond, VA. The announcement was made in the just days after the hospitalization of two eighth graders due to a new practice called "shamboiling". Shamboiling, also referred to as bubbling, is practice where shampoo is brought to a rapid boil and then the fumes are inhaled for a hallucinogenic effect. While no one knows for sure how the trend started one thing is certain, that shamboiling is catching on quickly and that it is potentially deadly.


    While this new threat has come as a shock to most parents, the  police say this is "nothing new", and that they've been dealing with  reports of shamboiling for years.


    "It's not a common occurrence or anything, but we'd maybe  see it two to three times a year, usually being done by addicts with no  other fix," Sheriff Truman said when asked about shamboiling. "The fact  that we've been getting more and more reports of people, especially  teens, [shamboiling] has been a bit of a shock," he went on to say.


    The key to shamboiling seems to be in ammonium lauryl  sulfate, a common ingredient in many shampoos that when heated up  produces a powerful hallucinogenic vapor. The Sheriff's department is  urging parents to check their shampoos for this ingredient, and to take  the necessary precautions to keep these chemicals away from children.

    Shamboiling has many potential risks including pneumonia, cardiac  failure or arrest, and aspiration of vomit. The inhaling of Ammonium  Lauryl Sulfate can cause hearing loss, limb spasms, and damage to the  central nervous system and brain. Serious but potentially reversible  effects include liver and kidney damage and blood-oxygen depletion.  Death from inhalants is generally caused by a very high concentration of  fumes. Brain damage is typically seen with chronic long-term use as  opposed to short-term exposure.

    Female inhalant users who are pregnant may have adverse effects on the  fetus, and the baby may be smaller when it is born and may need  additional health care (similar to those seen with alcohol - Fetal  Alcohol Syndrome). There is some evidence of birth defects and  disabilities in babies born to women who sniffed solvents such as  gasoline.

    However, fortunately,  there are ways to tell if your child is a 'bubbler', or if someone in  your household has recently been shamboiling. The boiled shampoo has a  distinct smell due to the gasses emitted from the boiling substance. .  "It smells like a combination of burnt nutmeg and hair,' according to  Sheriff Truman. Truman also went on to state that the strength of the  smell depended on the type of shampoo used.
    My  thoughts and prayers are with the families of those affected by this  horrid new trend. I hope it ends quickly and without a fight.

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