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Miss Alice forwarded another screaming panic email...
... and the Desk checked it out... and that's where the similarity to the other ninety-eight percent of these things ends.....
DAMN. It's TRUE!
But is isn't 'new'.... never mind the headline in the email.
The problem with "dusting" as it is called today or "huffing" as it was called in the seventies and eighties is the use of various chemicals as an inhalant has been around for ages and goes back to when industrial chemicals were first found to alter mood and behavior during the Industrial Revolution. The only thing that has really changed is the variety and types of products available for abuse over the years.
Call it what you will, it is illegal, dangerous, widespread and incredibly and dangerously stupid.
The chief danger with the practice is the asphyxiation of brain cells due to oxygen depravation or chemical intoxication to the point of saturation, which can lead to everything from cognitive problems on up to brain damage, stroke or even death. As 'huffing' is something that even very young schoolchildren do, the dangers can be extreme.
Which is very clear on an informational page from the US Department of Energy, Department of Science, Research News Page posted in 2002
...scientists at the Brookhaven National Laboratory—inspired by schoolchildren who wanted to know more about huffing—have produced the first-ever images showing what parts of the brain and body are most affected by toluene, a commonly inhaled solvent....
"For the first time, we have shown in living animals where the most commonly used solvent goes in the brain and the whole body," said Brookhaven neuroanatomist Stephen Dewey, a coauthor.
"This study was really born out of my going to elementary schools, where I've been giving talks about Brookhaven's addiction research since 1995," said Dewey. During his talks, children as young as fourth and fifth graders would sometimes ask him about huffing. "After about the third or fourth time someone asked me, I proposed that we develop a way to label and image solvents, which seem to be a 'gateway' drug of abuse for some young children," he said.
According to a story from June of 2005 on the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) a country wide warning was issued...
The warning comes after four 13-year-old girls were caught inhaling the contents of a can of computer duster in a junior high washroom.
The story also mentions the death of the teenage boy from the email, see below.
Enough of that....
From Falcon Safety Products® the makers of "dust off" and related products. On the product manufacturer's information page:
At Falcon we believe that through education we can help prevent future abuse and its devastating effects.
As it states on our cans:
"A cleaning duster is a serious product. Inhalant abuse is illegal and can cause permanent injury or be fatal. Please use our product responsibly."
The best info on the email is at BreakTheChain.org couldn't believe it was true either!
TruthOrFiction.com looks at it.
The page on the famous Snopes.com
"Thought this might interest you.
It did, thank you dear lady
Email Presented in its entirety and as received
some formatting changes made for this presentation for readability
From: Miss A
To: The Media Desk
Subject: Fw: Parents please READ....new drug warning
Date: Tue, 14 Nov 2006 17:36:57 -0500
DUSTING...A LETHAL HIGH !!
If you haven't heard about this already please read it, if you already know, then pass it along to someone who may not know about it.
First, I'm going to tell you a little about me and my family. My name is Jeff. I am a Police Officer for a city which is known nationwide for its crime rate. We have a lot of gangs and drugs. At one point we were # 2 in the nation in homicides per capita.
I also have a police K-9 named Thor. He was certified in drugs and general duty. He retired at 3 years old because he was shot in the line of duty. He lives with us now and I still train with him because he likes it. I always liked the fact that there was no way to bring drugs into my house. Thor wouldn't allow it. He would tell on you. The reason I say this is so you understand that I know about drugs.
I have taught in schools about drugs. My wife asks all our kids at least once a week if they used any drugs. Makes them promise they won't.
I like building computers occasionally and started building a new one in February 2005. I also was working on some of my older computers.....
They were full of dust so on one of my trips to the computer store I bought a 3 pack of DUST OFF. Dust Off is a can of compressed air to blow dust off a computer.
A few weeks later when I went to use one of them they were all used. I talked to my kids and my two sons both said they had used them on their computer and messing around with them. I yelled at them for wasting the 10 dollars I paid for them.
On February 28 I went back to the computer store. They didn't have the 3 pack which I had bought on sale so I bought a single jumbo can of Dust Off. I went home and set it down beside my computer.
On March 1st, I left for work at 10 PM. Just before midnight my wife went down and kissed Kyle goodnight. At 5:30 am the next morning Kathy went downstairs to wake Kyle up for school, before she left for work.
He was propped up in bed with his legs crossed and his head leaning over. She called to him a few times to get up. He didn't move. He would sometimes tease her like this and pretend he fell back asleep. He was never easy to get up. She went in and shook his arm. He fell over.
He was pale white and had the straw from the Dust Off can coming out of his mouth. He had the new can of Dust Off in his hands. Kyle was dead.
I am a police officer and I had never heard of this. My wife is a nurse and she had never heard of this. We later found out from the coroner, after the autopsy, that only the propellant from the can of Dust off was in his system. No other drugs. Kyle had died between midnight and 1 AM.
I found out that using Dust Off is being done mostly by kids ages 9 through 15. They even have a name for it. It's called dusting, a takeoff from the product's name. It will produce a high for about 10 seconds. It makes them dizzy. A boy who lives down the street from us showed Kyle how to do this about a month before.
The horrible part about this is there is no warning. There is no level that kills you. It's not cumulative or an overdose; it can just go randomly, terribly wrong. Roll the dice and if your number comes up you die. ITS NOT AN OVERDOSE. It's Russian Roulette. You don't die later. Or not feel good and say I've had too much. You usually die as you're breathing it in. If not you die within 2 seconds of finishing "the hit." That's why the straw was still in Kyle's mouth when he died. Why his eyes were still open.
The experts want to call this huffing. The kids don't believe its huffing. As adults we tend to lump many things together. But it doesn't fit here. And that's why its more accepted. There is no chemical reaction, no strong odor. It doesn't follow the huffing signals.
Kyle complained a few days before he died of his tongue hurting. It probably did. The propellant causes frostbite. If I had only known.
It's easy to say hey, it's my life and I'll do what I want. But it isn't. Others are always affected. This has forever changed our family's life. I have a hole in my heart and soul that can never be fixed. The pain is so immense I can't describe it. There's nowhere to run from it. I cry all the time. I do what I'm supposed to do but I don't really care. My kids are messed up. One won't talk about it.
The other will only sleep in our room at night. And my wife, I can't even describe how bad she is taking this.
I thought we were safe because of Thor. I thought we were safe because we knew about drugs and talked to our kids about them.
After Kyle died another story came out. A probation Officer went to the school system next to ours to speak with a student. While there he found a student using Dust Off in the bathroom. This student told him about another student who also had some in his locker. This is a rather affluent school system. They will tell you they don't have a drug problem there. They don't even have a dare or plus program there. So rather than tell everyone about this "new" way of getting high they found, they hid it. The probation officer told the media after Kyle's death and they, the school, then admitted to it. I know that if they had told the media and I had heard, it wouldn't have been in my house.
We need to get this out of our homes and school computer labs. Using Dust Off isn't new and some "professionals" do know about. It just isn't talked about much, except by the kids. They all seem to know about it. April 2nd was one month since Kyle died. April 5th would have been his 15th birthday. And every weekday I catch myself sitting on the living room couch at 2:30 in the afternoon and waiting to see him get off the bus. I know Kyle is in heaven but I can't help but wonder if I have also died and ..... and have gone to Hell. It certainly is a Hell!!
This Officer is asking for everyone who receives this email to forward it to everyone in their address book, even Law Enforcement Officers.
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