Hand Sanitizers: the New Way for Kids to Get Drunk
Teens and Hand Sanitizers: Intentional Misuse and Abuse
Recently, poison centers and emergency rooms have noticed a troubling new trend – teens drinking ethanol hand sanitizers to get drunk.
- Hand sanitizers contain more than 60 percent ethyl alcohol (ethanol) –more than most hard liquor.
- Drinking ethanol-based hand sanitizer can cause alcohol poisoning.
- Some teens “distill” the hand sanitizer through a process they find online.
Alcohol poisoning is dangerous! Symptoms include confusion, vomiting, seizures, slow or irregular breathing, blue-tinged or pale skin, low body temperature, and unconsciousness.
- Talk to your teens about the dangers of drinking hand sanitizers.
- Explain why alcohol poisoning is not a laughing matter.
- Buy foam hand sanitizers rather than liquid or gel.
- Buy hand sanitizers that are ethanol-free.
- Monitor your teens and their use of sanitizers.
- If you think someone has drunk hand sanitizer to get high,call 1-800-222-1222 to reach the experts at your local poison center. Don’t wait for symptoms to develop!