Addicts have found multiple ways of using drugs. Drugs can be taken orally, smoked, injected, and sniffed or snorted. Different ingestion methods achieve a more intense high in a shorter amount of time and have other side effects. Many addicts think by snorting a drug, they are safer because they aren’t injecting it intravenously. Another misconception is if an addict is snorting a prescribed drug rather than a street drug, they are also safer. Both of these misconceptions are far from the truth. Snorting prescribed drugs is just as dangerous as shooting up street drugs.
Some drugs that are commonly snorted include:
- Opioid painkillers, such as Vicodin, Percocet, and OxyContin
- Prescription stimulants, such as Adderall and Ritalin
What Is Sniffing / Snorting?
Snorting or sniffing is when an addict inhales a drug in powder form or a crushed-up pill through the nose. This way of administration is also referred to as nasal insufflation or intranasal.
Because it is misunderstood that snorting prescribed drugs, such as pills, is safer than shooting up street drugs, there has been a rise in overdoses due to snorting prescription pills.
Prescription pills are made to be taken in a particular way, often ingested orally, and to be released slowly. When taken the right way, the medication is broken down in the stomach before being absorbed into the bloodstream over time. By snorting, the drug’s full effect is released almost immediately by going straight into the bloodstream via blood vessels in the nasal cavity, which can have serious consequences.
Health Dangers from Snorting Pills
Your nose simply wasn’t meant to inhale powders. Sniffing or snorting drugs has multiple health consequences. You can damage your respiratory system, making it difficult for you to breathe normally. The mucous membranes in your nose are incredibly delicate and can be easily damaged. When these get damaged, they stop functioning normally, making your typical respiratory actions not work correctly.
Other side effects of snorting drugs include:
- Increased heart
- Loss of smell
- Frequent runny nose
- Problems with swallowing
Long-term effects are the most severe and often cause permanent damage to the nose. Long-term snorting of drugs sets up a cascade of infections and damage leading to perforation in the septum part of the nose. A nasal septum perforation is a medical condition in which the nasal septum, the bony/cartilage wall dividing the nasal cavities, develops a hole.
The belief that snorting drugs cannot lead to addiction is also far from true. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIH), the path to drug addiction begins with the voluntary act of taking drugs. But over time, a person’s ability to choose not to do so becomes compromised. Seeking and taking the drug becomes compulsive. This is primarily due to the effects of long-term drug exposure on brain function. Addiction affects parts of the brain involved in reward and motivation, learning and memory, and control over behavior.
If you or a loved one have been sorting or sniffing pills and noticed the signs of addiction such as:
- Obsessive thoughts
- Disregard of harm
- Loss of control
- Mood change
- Loss of interest
- Hiding drug use
We Are Here to Help with Drug Addiction
We At Allure Detox can help you get in the right direction to recovery. The priority of a detox is to help patients stop using drugs and alcohol safely. But Allure’s Medical detox offers more: a renewed love of life.
We look forward to working with you and your family to get your lives back on track. Contact us around the clock for a confidential assessment, and let’s see if Allure Detox is the right treatment center for yourself or a loved one.