'Huffing' Resurfaces in Marathon County

By: Clare Kaley Email
By: Clare Kaley Email
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Have you ever heard of huffing? Its a trend resurfacing in our area, where people of all ages attempt to use household products to get high.

Sprayed air freshener in hand isolated on black

Have you ever heard of huffing? Its a trend resurfacing in our area, where people of all ages attempt to use household products to get high.

"One time, the lights can go out and you can pass away from it so its very dangerous, its very serious," Melissa Dotter said.

It sounds like a thing of the past, huffing, but the issue is resurfacing in our community.

"You go into a restroom and there's an air freshener in there, you pull open your desk drawer and there's dust off in your desk drawer," Dotter said, "its just something that is available, it is cheap, its a very quick high."

Melissa Dotter of the Alcohol and Other Drug Partnership says she sees instances of people using household items to get high, all to often. That use can lead to other drugs like heroin and methamphetamine.

In the past month, Marathon County has seen at least four instances of huffing, and police are making arrests.

"Its definitely something that's in the statutes for great reason because it does cause bodily harm," Dotter said, "it does cause injury not only to the person but if they are doing something like driving to the point where there is an accident."

This isn't just seen in young people. Since the products are inexpensive and readily available, people of all ages are huffing.

"I think a lot of the time we think its a funny thing to do to see how it feels and really it can have a long-term effect," Dotter said.

There are also steps the community can take to watch out for the trend.

"If you notice that your stock of things like dust off is disappearing even more quickly, start asking questions and paying attention."

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