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Number Of Teens Smoking Alcohol On The Rise

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(credit: KTVT/KTXA) Jennifer Lindgren
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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - Toxicologists say smoking alcohol can be a dangerous way to get drunk, especially for teenagers.

The fad first appeared in the mid-2000s, then disappeared.

The North Texas Poison Center, based at Parkland Health and Hospital Systems, is once again getting calls with concerns about smoking alcohol, and abuse.

YouTube is full of tutorials on how to smoke alcohol, which usually involves either pouring liquor over dry ice, or making a pressurizer using soda liter bottles, then inhaling the vapor that forms.

“The doses could be deadly,” said Brett Roth, MD.

The Medical Director for the North Texas Poison Center, Brett Roth explains how the alcohol can quickly travel to the brain when inhaled.

“It bypasses the liver and doesn’t metabolize, so it’s a much more rapid onset of the effects from the ethanol,” said Roth.

Just this afternoon, a hotline operator took a call from a school nurse, who expressed concerns that a 15 year old girl was inhaling alcohol. It’s the 21st call regarding the trend since the start of 2013.

Roth says one of the challenges involving this fad, is that doctors and toxicologists are in need of more information on what parents are seeing and hearing from teens.

People are urged to call the North Texas Poison Center 24/7 Hotline, at 800-222-1222 with questions or concerns.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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