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Cedar City Police see increase in teen huffing

CEDAR CITY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) – Cedar City Police are warning parents to pay attention to what your kids are doing.
CEDAR CITY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) – Cedar City Police are warning parents to pay attention to what your kids are doing.

They've seen a sudden increase in teens huffing dangerous chemicals.

In less than a month the department has arrested six juveniles, ranging from 13 to 17 years old for abusing inhalants.

Inhalants can be addictive and dangerous, especially on developing minds.

"They are very fast acting and very short acting, so the high is relatively quick, although the debilitation can persist longer than a person actually feels it," said Dr. Kevin T. McCauley with New Roads Treatment Center.

Inhalants are easily accessible and are commonly used around the house.

They can include felt-tipped markers, gasoline, butane, paint, glue, whipped cream and the inhalant of choice these days is computer dust remover.

"The things that will tip you off are intoxication, they'll be slurring their speech, they'll be uncoordinated. I'd also look for cans of computer duster," said McCauley.

Other signs that could indicate your teen is huffing include painting their fingernails with markers or white out, paint on their face, fingers and clothing and if they have numerous markers or cigarette lighters in their rooms, back packs or lockers.

Inhalants can cause hallucinations, violent behavior, depression and even death.

"They are very neurotoxin, especially to developing brains these drugs are very harmful," said McCauley.

Cedar City Police say you shouldn't wait until you suspect a problem.

Be proactive, talk to your children about the dangers of huffing and encourage them to report any abuse they may see.

If you do suspect your child is abusing inhalants you should confront them and seek professional counseling.

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