The Dangers of Drinking Hand Sanitizer

Asheville Alcohol Rehab CenterDo you or someone you love have an alcohol abuse issue? If so, there may be more to it than drinking alcohol to get a buzz. In fact, there are some substances that are being consumed that most people never think about. When this is the case, it's harder for loved ones to know that a problem exists. Even more, dangers of drinking substances that aren't made for consumption are high. If you've made bad choices with substance abuse, help is available at our Asheville alcohol rehab center and drug treatment facility. Call Legacy to learn more.

Hand sanitizer is a disinfectant used to clean hands in times when washing them is not an option. Despite how popular this form of cleansing has become, it does not give users a green light to consume the substance in place of an alcoholic drink.

You might be wondering why we are even discussing this topic. However, as perplexing as it may be to you, because hand sanitizer is alcohol-based, there seems to be a growing issue of people consuming it. In 2016, there were almost 2000 more cases of individuals drinking hand sanitizer.

That means, according to the American Association of Poison Control Centers, almost 20,000 people reported that they drank hand sanitizer intentionally. It some cases it resulted in deaths.

Most brand name hand sanitizers are at least 60 to 65% alcohol. That means it's equal to two shots of 80 proof vodka. Even more, hand sanitizer contains ethanol alcohol. This is the same substance within one glass of wine that can create a buzz when you drink it.

Many times, children under the age of six years old might drink it accidentally after finding it at home or in their parent's handbag. They may also lick their hands after applying the sanitizer.

Teenagers will typically consume the substance in order to get "buzzed" from the high alcohol content found within it. 2012 research showed that incidence of drinking hand sanitizer on purpose between 2005 and 2009 were significantly higher in young adults and adults.

Because hand sanitizer is mostly made of ethanol alcohol, it is much more potent than other alcohol sources. Many varieties use rubbing alcohol, which is even more potent.

There are many health concerns that come with drinking hand sanitizer. It has a terrible taste that cannot be easy to consume. Unfortunately, there are ways to get around the taste of it. Many who abuse this substance have begun adding salt to separate the alcohol from the gel or add in Listerine to alter the taste.

There are very dangerous side effects that come from drinking hand sanitizer. They include damage to internal organs, vision problems, memory loss and alcohol poisoning. Alcohol poisoning can even lead to death. It is important to understand that drinking hand sanitizer is very risky and can be detrimental to your health. For those under the age of 24, drinking hand sanitizer can cause problems with physiological and psychological development. Because any type of substance abuse can be bad for your developmental future, it's important to refrain from drinking any type of alcohol or using drugs.

According to, "A study of 385 teenagers who ingested hand sanitizer in Texas between 2000 and 2013 reported that most of them said they drank it by accident, and only 18 percent said they ingested it deliberately. More than 60 percent were boys, and the average age was 15. About 5 percent suffered serious medical outcomes including vomiting, abdominal pain, nausea, throat irritation and drowsiness."

The website also states that due to this rising problem, "The Food and Drug Administration announced recently that it is studying the safety and efficacy of hand sanitizers and has asked manufacturers for information about the active ingredients, including ethanol or ethyl alcohol and isopropyl alcohol. The agency is interested in gathering more data on the long-term safety of daily use of these products by pregnant women and children."

After reading this, you might be wondering who it is that drinks hand sanitizer to get a buzz. However, you may be someone who has an alcohol abuse problem and understands where the problem is coming from. Having several bottles of hand sanitizer in your purse or car is much less obvious than having several bottles of vodka lying around. For alcohol abusers, it's an easy fix to a continual problem. If you or someone you love have an issue with drinking too much, contact us now.

Sometimes, you rely so much on alcohol that it becomes a dependency. You might not even realize the addiction is there. That's why our alcohol rehab programs can help. Our holistic approach to customized therapy offers the best solution for addiction. You don't have to miss work or school in order to recover. You can go on about your daily routine and implement our programs into your typical day.

A Reliable Asheville Alcohol Rehab Center You Can Trust

If you, or someone you love, are suffering from an alcohol or substance abuse problem and need help, consider Legacy Freedom. We're a top rated Asheville alcohol rehab center. Addiction isn’t something that can be beaten easily. Often it requires extensive rehab and support. Our outpatient treatment center can offer both to you when you’re ready. Addiction can leave you feeling sad, lonely, and angry. You are not alone. Legacy Freedom of Asheville is here to help you get back on track to a happier, healthy, drug free life with the best alcohol treatment center in the area.

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