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  • Alcohol Injection & Other Dangerous Methods Of Abuse

    Injecting Alcohol | IV Alcohol Use & Other Dangerous Methods Of Abuse

    Some people look for alternative ways to consume alcohol. One of those ways is injecting alcohol. This should never be done as it is very dangerous and can lead to negative side effects, including death.

    Besides the injection of alcohol, there are also other unconventional means of alcohol consumption that can have devastating consequences. 

    Is Injecting Alcohol Safe?

    The short answer is no. Injecting alcohol, whether it’s isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol), pure ethanol, or whiskey, is not safe

    It sends the alcohol right into your bloodstream and enters the brain and other systems in the body. The body then rapidly absorbs it, gets you drunk immediately, and can easily lead to severe alcohol poisoning. 

    When you drink alcohol, it has time to absorb and metabolize slowly. The stomach puts the alcohol into your system and the liver works to take it out. The body also takes out any impurities that might be in the alcohol. None of this occurs with an intravenous injection.

    Even with a small amount of alcohol, it can have very serious side effects and be life-threatening.

    Side Effects Of Injecting Alcohol

    The side effects of alcohol injection are very dangerous and can ultimately be fatal. 

    Some of the effects include: 

    Whether you think you’re trying to cheat a breathalyzer, don’t want the smell of alcohol on your breath, are trying to avoid the carbs in alcoholic beverages, or want to get drunk faster, injecting alcohol is never a safe practice. It can quickly lead to an emergency.

    Other Dangerous Methods Of Alcohol Consumption

    Unfortunately, injecting alcohol is not the only way people try to get drunk without drinking it. Other dangerous methods of abuse include:

    Alcohol Enema

    With this method, also known as butt-chugging, people inject alcohol into their rectum. 

    Because the membranes in that part of the body are porous, they absorb things very rapidly. Just like injecting alcohol into a vein, the alcohol goes straight to the brain and can cause the person to pass out and die immediately. 

    Additionally, because the alcohol is absorbed so quickly, there is nothing the person can do to stop these effects. Vomiting won’t work to decrease the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) because alcohol completely bypasses the digestive system and is not in the stomach.

    Alcohol-Soaked Tampon

    This is another method of alcohol use that can be very dangerous. It’s a pretty simple method of soaking a tampon in alcohol (usually vodka) and then inserting it into the vagina or the rectum. 

    This can not only damage the vagina but it can also lead to abnormal PH levels in that part of the body. The PH levels are what keeps the vagina healthy, the bacteria balanced, and the organ self-cleaning.

    While this method may be less dangerous than an alcohol enema, it can cause infections, scarring, and even lead to infertility. It’s best to stick to drinking alcohol if you’re going to consume it.

    Snorting Alcohol

    Snorting alcohol has similar effects to injecting it. Once it goes up the nose, it goes straight to the bloodstream and into the brain. When snoring, people either use a powdered form of alcohol called palcohol or simply snort the liquid. 

    If alcohol enters the lungs when snorting it, it can cause the person to drown.

    If you or a loved one struggles with alcohol abuse, call our helpline today and find the treatment program that’s right for you.

    Written by Ark Behavioral Health Editorial Team
    ©2022 Ark National Holdings, LLC. | All Rights Reserved.
    This page does not provide medical advice.
    Sources

    Alcohol and Alcoholism - Intravenous Injection Of Alcohol By Drug Injectors: Report Of Three Cases
    Michigan Department of Health and Human Services - Fact Sheet about Powdered Alcohol
    National Library of Medicine - Self-Administered Ethanol Enema Causing Accidental Death
    National Library of Medicine: MedlinePlus - Alcohol

    Medically Reviewed by
    Manish Mishra, MBBS
    on July 16, 2021
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