Contact Us
Make My Homepage

Teens Getting Drunk on Hand Sanitizer [AUDIO]

If there’s alcohol in it, somebody’s going to drink it. That’s the warning from local health experts, as a growing number of teenagers across the country have been getting drunk by guzzling hand sanitizer.

Dino Flammia, Townsquare Media

In some cases, teens use salt to extract the alcohol from the product. In others, the sanitizer is imbibed on its own.

The alcohol content of liquid hand sanitizer rivals that of some top-shelf liquors.

“Hand sanitizer is 62 percent alcohol,” said Steven Liga, CEO of the Middlesex County Chapter of the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence. “Your typical vodka is about 40 percent.”

The “harmful” product can be found just about anywhere  – schools, hospitals, grocery stores, and adults’ purses to name a few spots. Plus, it’s cheap. For that reason, Liga said trying to keep kids away from hand sanitizer is unrealistic. Instead, parents should educate their kids “and tell them not to do something stupid.”

“Hand sanitizer has just become another household product that we need to be aware of that kids can use to get high, just like many of the products we keep under the sink,” Liga explained.

Drunk-by-hand sanitizer cases have been monitored by officials since 2010, but the problem has spiked in the past few weeks. Six teens recently arrived at California emergency rooms with alcohol poisoning after drinking hand sanitizer.

A few “drinks” can cause someone to slur their speech and bring about other symptoms similar to being drunk.

While experts have advised parents to purchase foam-like sanitizer for their homes, instead of gel, Liga said teens can still get their fix off foam.

“It’s the dispenser that makes it foam,” he said. “If you get into the bottle itself, it’s liquid.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Best of NJ101.5

Recommended For You

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for New Jersey Insiders quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive New Jersey Insiders contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.