Bad news for recreational drug users: Think twice before snorting poppers up your nose, lest you suffer from “sudden sniffing death.”
A new study has found that poppers just ain’t what they used to be. That is, they aren’t made with the same kind of nitrites as back in the day. Instead, many now contain things like household glues, aerosols, and other icky chemicals that were never intended to be consumed by humans.
Researchers at UCLA warn:
Gay men can easily be introduced to these products by sexual partners without being aware of the dangers, and physicians also need to understand the dangers and alert their patients, according to a research team led by Dr. Timothy Hall of the University of California, Los Angeles.
Doctors “are taught almost nothing about regular nitrite poppers,” Hall said in a news release. “They’re little more than a footnote at the back of most addiction textbooks, lumped in with sniffing glue and huffing aerosols, even though the physiologic effects are quite different.
“Gay and bisexual men, on the other hand, have little exposure to huffing but tend to think of nitrite poppers as fairly benign,” he added. “There’s a real risk here for [gay men] to be taking a much more harmful substance than they’re expecting, and for clinicians not to recognize the difference.”
In other words, you might snort the new poppers, have a bad reaction, and your doctor won’t know what the hell to do about it.
So what are the risks exactly?
Well, you could develop a deadly heart rhythm disorder called “sudden sniffing death,” which a person can’t know they are prone to it until it’s too late.
Researchers suggest that you don’t do poppers. Or, if you d0, at least don’t accept any without knowing what kind they are.
This Notorious ’80s Cult Film Had Tony Perkins Doing Real Poppers On Camera And Nearly Starred Cher
STUDY: Use Of Poppers May Lead To Eye Damage, Loss Of Sight
Hmmm..I just heard not to do any kind of ED drug with them.
Alan down in Florida
I have always stayed away from poppers in my 61 years exactly because of this reason so it is not necessarily new news.
MGFM. More gay fear mongering. Sudden Sniffing Death? Sounds like a porn movie.
Sorry… have been using poppers since I came out at 18 (I’m in my 50’s now). Back then, they were basically required once you hit the dance floor. Now, I use them during sex 99% of the time. I have no plans to stop, but seriously, they are NOT addictive.
My ordinary bottle of Rush just says “Isopropyl Nitrite,” so I’m inclined to think this is fear mongering, unless maybe there are bargain-basement brands with adulterated gunk.
@Ladbrook: I can’t get f*cked without them, just can’t do it! – but wouldn’t want it for other sex.
Why were they changed? Why aren’t they [email protected]Ladbrook: There are people who smoke for 50 years without getting cancer. That doesn’t make cigarettes safe and healthy.
Even if they are harmful (which is questionable) it shouldn’t be illegal to kill yourself anyway you see fit.
@Alan down in Florida: Good. I’m a bi woman who has never used poppers, but I remember when they were sold openly and advertised in LGBT magazines during the 1970s. The most popular one was sold under the brand name Rush.
The paid advertisements always identified Rush and the other brands as room odorizers. The manufacturers weren’t allowed to say they they were meant for inhaling, but it was possible to buy inhalers which fit on the containers. Supposedly, the inhalers screened out some of the fumes.
A bit of ridiculous history: Circa 1980, a fire broke out in a warehouse in San Francisco. The company which operated under the Rush brand name had a bunch of its unsold merchandise stored there, and a reporter with one a local TV station sensationalized the story by showing one of the products during his report. He claimed he was holding a container of poppers, but it was actually a tube of personal lubricant.
I would have dismissed this as nonsense until recently. I had company over and he started using his poppers (you can all guess what we were doing at the time but I’m not telling). Suddenly he passes out, and not for a brief time. He was in and out of consciousness for five hours, threw up all over my bed, and had trouble standing. I wanted to call the paramedics but he wouldn’t let me. It was scary stuff, to say the least. (He did fully recover, BTW.)
Poppers were always a rarely-used option for me (they have the opposite of the desired effect on me—I go limp). Now they’ve been consigned to the garbage can. Just not worth the risks.
@kofender:That can’t be from just poppers. Everything you describe fits something like GHB perfectly though.
This article is missing lots of information.
Go to tandfonline and search “poppers”
Article/Study is called “Sometimes Poppers Are Not Poppers: Huffing as an Emergent Health Concern Among MSM Substance Users”
Bottom line, this refers to “huffing” using ethyl chloride and not sniffing nitrite based poppers (the kind we’ve been using for years).
@onthemark: LOL. I agree, and that was my point. I was trying to be subtle, but you SAID IT, so yeah… that’s exactly why I use them too. 😉
People still use those?
@kofender, when topping they are awesome just a minute or so before ejaculating, because yes, use them too early on and you do go limp. For the bottom that doesn’t apply, of course.
40 here. I have never taken poppers and have out right refused to take them from partners and feel a little weird when I’m banging someone and he pulls it out. To those who do though what do you get out of using them? I’ve always thought of it as an older gay man drug, but noticing younger dudes doing it now. No judgment meant just curious.
You’ve been using them regularly for more than three decades and basically can’t have sex without them – but you’re not addicted. Riiiight.
Oh, gee, yet another way for gay men to inflict harm onto themselves!!! As if promiscuity and sleaze weren’t enough, now it’s on to new forms of poppers. Talk about self-harm….
Let’s face it – ever since the gay scene was invented, it’s been a spiral towards self-harm.
Maybe if the anti-sex crowd had minded their own business and hadn’t pushed to make to original product illegal, this wouldn’t be an issue. But since people were using them for GASP!! sex, we couldn’t have that. Ties right into the mind-set of busy-bodies.
A little more information about this “study” would have been helpful. All I can find on-line seems to be press releases parroting the info above. Altho my favorite headline contained the phrse “Gay Club Drug Poppers”
@Alan down in Florida: No it’s not. I have never used them and do not want to but people who have told me how they’re basically like sniffing glue, and even the old ones that were Amyl are like this.
I the 70’s I bought amyl nitrate in Oregon, it was legal then. Great stuff!
When I tried Rush and it twin products out at the time I had bad reactions. My nostrils were burned an mostly any part of my body exposed to it was burned also. I quit the stuff. I have seen glue sniffers and the burns were similar.
Never used them. Never needed them.
I admit, I am addicted to them. Believe it or not, I was introduced to them by a Catholic priest that picked me up cruising in a park some 38 years ago. Good times.
PLAYS WELL WITH OTHERS
Once upon a time they were excellent for giving you an absolute intense sexual intensity. It was hard to describe but would make you lose your inhibitions and just get so very into the act of sex. Be it sucking, getting sucked, fcuking, getting fckued et all…………..
However the last few years they have changed, no matter what the brand they all pretty much suck. A friend brought back a bottle recently from Europe and had the same effects as they used to. New formula just ain’t worth it………..
@jason smeds: Son, you really need to get help with your self-hatred, insane imagination, and your “I’m not one of THOSE gays!” syndrome.
The original formula, amyl nitrite, was the best. When that was banned and you couldn’t get it anymore, the isopropyl nitrites and other later substitutes were never the same. It seems like every time they banned one formula they came out with something worse.
I spilled some in my eye about 20 years ago and never used poppers again. To explain the bloodshot eye at work, I told everyone I splashed Clorox in it.
@Scribe38: “To those who do though what do you get out of using them?”
Proper poppers take away all thought and make you feel like an abject purely sexual animal, like you exist to just have sex and now you’re having it. When used sparingly, they are awesome.
The article quoted doesn’t really say that poppers contain huffing substances. It is basically about how nitrite use is DIFFERENT from huffing, not the same.
Poppers nowadays are still usually nitrites, though normally butyl-, not amyl-.
@socaldesign: Thanks, this article is DEFINITELY very misleading and barely even relates to the actual study that it refers to. i.e. the study is not blaming the effects on amyl/butyl/alkyl nitrates but rather the sprays cans such as “Max Impact” Recently had a friend die from using the max impact spray…otherwise a fit healthy young guy. Mean Stuff, be careful.
Link to the study below…if queerty will allow the post.
@Ladbrook: you use them 99% of the time during sex but they’re not addicting? What is sex like without them?
@ksterlings: @vive: Thanks! – finally an explanation. It’s baffling that the Queerty staff in SF could really be THAT clueless about poppers, or seriously want to go on a typically American puritanical crusade against them. Or perhaps none of them have ever been to Europe, or even Canada? (I see with amazement that the author is Graham Gremore who I’ve always assumed is British b/c of his very *un-American* first name.) And yikes, that headline, which we can only hope is an attempt at sarcasm: “the new gay poppers,” really?
@mysterymr: I think the semantic problem with Ladbrook is that he’s conflating “sex” with “anal sex as a bottom,” which as he admitted to me, he was trying to be genteel or la-te-da or something and not say directly. (We’re such delicate flowers here in Queerty comments!) So regarding addiction I’d simply wonder how often he does that.
@vive: Using poppers or even the original Amyl is like huffing or sniffing glue.
To clarify, yes, as a bottom, I enjoy poppers and usually use them during anal sex. It’s a fairly common practice. So what?
@onthemark: “It’s baffling that the Queerty staff in SF could really be THAT clueless about poppers, or seriously want to go on a typically American puritanical crusade against them. Or perhaps none of them have ever been to Europe, or even Canada?”
It is baffling. Although I should note that poppers are now banned in Canada (or at least Ontario AFAIK).
@Clark35: “Using poppers or even the original Amyl is like huffing or sniffing glue.”
The whole point of the study quoted is to point out that using nitrites is NOT like huffing or sniffing glue.
@Ladbrook: uh… calm down… nothing wrong with being a bottom in anal sex… I do it myself as I already said.
The question was are you “addicted” to poppers. And remember, you brought up that question yourself! (perhaps unwisely lol). So the only way to answer that question (which you brought up) is how often you do it.
@onthemark, poppers are not addictive. There is no physiological dependency or withdrawal syndrome. Unlike addictive drugs, people CAN really stop anytime they want to.
As a hetero Troll on this site do you masturbate as you write? Do you cum right before, or after you hit the post button ( I vote before as you’re probably one of those premature guys).
You’re always good for a laugh Jason Smeds
@onthemark: Nah, not addicted, just find it more pleasurable. I don’t always use them, but I do prefer them… and generally have them around.
@scotshot: He has erectile dysfunction, so he doesn’t actually cum… which probably explains his constant trolling. It’s his anger release.
Yeah, this is a link-bait article, full of sound a fury… but if you can’t have sex without poppers, you are a drug addict.
Why on earth should I subscribe to poppers? Poppers are for poopers. People who take poppers are inadequate little morons whose opening of the bottle emits a foul stink which is offensive to most normal people.
If you take poppers, you are sick and in need of help.
the manufacture, distribution, and sale of them is now illegal…
also, not only in Ontario…
purchase, possession, usage, etc is not an issue…
one just can’t be canadian and be in the business of making or selling them, nor of shipping them in between…
people now have to buy them online from wherever, or just go crossborder shopping if close enough to…
(or get from someone who has… and end up paying like forty; fifty bucks… )
doing so is still possible, but when the ban was first put in place last year, Health Canada DID say that they were planning on working with Border Services to eventually put a stop to them getting into the country…
@SethNg: I’m surprised to hear this. What were the b.s. “reasons” for the law?
You’ve been warned. I stopped using them. Got a really bad cough from a bottle of Rush poppers. Had been using Rush for years and no problem, but I know I got a bad bottle even though it was real “never fake it” version from the original company.
Sniffing “poppers” and huffing things (like gas, paint, or glue) involve different mechanisms of action in the body.
The euphoric effect of huffing is primarily due to asphyxia — a lowering of the brain’s oxygen supply.
“Poppers” — amyl nitrate, butyl nitrate, isobutyl nitrate — are all in the alkyl nitrate family of compounds. Nitrates are vasodilators that open (dilate) blood vessels through muscle relaxation. They are called poppers because amyl nitrate used to be sold in thin glass vials, which were crushed or “popped” to release the volatile nitrate. Amyl nitrate has been used to treat acute chest pain caused by angina. They are also often used in receptive anal sex to relax the anal sphincter muscle.
Poppers aren’t entirely safe to use, especially by those with heart or blood pressure issues. And they definitely shouldn’t be used along with GHB or erectile dysfunction drugs, which could cause dangerously low blood pressure and death.
@rhino79, yes, though it is ironic that government regulation has caused people to change from the relatively safe amyl nitrite (with the provisos you mention) to alternatives that are less safe. This tends to be the case with almost all drug regulation, namely driving people to using more dangerous options instead.
John D. Plume
Alkyl nitrites are used because they act upon the parasympathetic nervous system, making anal insertion much easier (relaxes the inner of the two sphincters in the anus which is not under voluntary control unlike the outer).
In fact, in American gay porn magazines in the ’70s, drug companies put ads in selling poppers.
That said, poppers are immuno-suppressive. They degrade easily and quickly into very toxic chemicals that can, literally, be used to strip paint off wood.
And a man who stops in the middle of sex to huff? Not sexy.
http://popperpignet.tumblr.com/post/111489101627/poppers-panic-2015-danger-to-gay-men-huffing – “Danger to Gay Men Huffing Poppers”
Caution should always be adhered to no matter what you put into your body, including food, alcohol or any drug. Poppers are harmless compared to the other crap people consume in large quantities. And most who use poppers are not using all day long everyday. They’re using it during sexual activity which at the most is probably once a day if even that. There have been very little cases if any reported where something bad happened due to popper use. I’ve never ever heard of any cases actually. Maybe they’ve happened, but they’ve never been on the news.
@jason smeds: I would use the word ‘normal’ loosely on a gay site. You don’t have the market cornered on what’s considered ‘normal’.
@raincityjack: There are millions of men who pop a pill to get it up, so therefore they should all be considered drug addicts to by your logic.
@batesnight: Amyl nitrite is “normal.” Isobutyl is harmful, cyclohextyl is a headache-in-a-bottle…NOT “normal>” These queens bitching due to this dyke-run publication trying to give us the Ronnie Ray-Gun “just say no” crap just do NOT get it. They still blame Locker Room for AIDS, and blah de fuckin’ blah. Fuck ’em all.
@jason smeds: Another Millennial Moron chimes in. If you knew ANYTHING about gay history, you’d know how fucking stupid that whole idea is.
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