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|Officials Want Parents to Be Aware of Inhalant Abuse
|A group of local officials is trying to make parents aware of something their children may be doing that they may not know about.
This week has been declared by Galesburg Mayor Gary Smith as "Inhalant and Poisons Awareness Week" in the city, and the Knox County Substance Abuse and Prevention Coalition says Illinois Youth Survey data indicates 10th and 12th graders locally reported almost twice the monthly inhalant use average in 2008, and that inhalant use among 6th graders is the number one drug they abuse.
Knox County Teen Court Executive Director Paula Johnson is on the coalition, and she tells WGIL someone who inhales typical household chemicals can exhibit symptoms that are like any of a number of other drugs people may use and abuse.
"Red eyes, slurred speech, dizziness, disoriented, loss of appetite, lethargic, irritable -- those type of things," Johnson said. "Just think of when you are cleaning your house -- how you get. They can also develop sores around the place where they inhale it."
Coalition officials say that's in addition to less obvious signs, like finding lots of empty lighters, spray paint cans, or plastic bags.
They say it could do anything from killing brain cells of the users, or the users themselves. The coalition is encouraging parents to get educated about inhalant abuse so they can educate their kids.
(Galesburg Mayor Gary Smith issues a proclamation March 2nd declaring "Inhalant and Poisons Awareness Week" the week of March 15-21. Smith is joined by members of the Knox County Substance Abuse and Prevention Coalition. WGIL News Story and Photos by Will Stevenson.)
|03 16 09 by Newsroom
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