What Would YOU Do For Alcohol?


| 8 Comments
This week I was thinking about what to blog about and came across an interesting article.  Before I get into that though, I want you to think about a simple question. What would YOU do for alcohol?

We all go to the Penn State University.  It is no secret that the school we all attend and love is one of the best places in this country to party if you are in between the ages of 18 and 22.   Some of us drink and some stay away from alcohol, but either way you cannot ignore the culture that surrounds us on a daily basis.

That is why when I came across an article about teenagers drinking hand sanitizer mixed with salt in order to get drunk I was stunned.  The first thing that came to my head is these kids have gone pretty far to get a form of alcohol.  I now wondered what my fellow peers at Penn State would do in order to get a beer on a Friday night.

First before we discuss that, lets get into the science that is involved here.  After reading the first part of this blog you may be scratching your head and asking "Wait how are kids getting drunk off of ... hand sanitizer?"

Hand sanitizer is actually 62-65% ethyl alcohol.  Also known as ethanol, this is the main ingredient in a variety of alcoholic beverages.  Students obviously realizing that it would be better to not just drink the sanitizer how it is sold, developed a method to separate the alcohol from the sanitizer. By adding salt to break up the mixture this makes the final product which is in fact more potent.

UseAlcoholBasedHandSanitizer.jpg

A few shots of the makeshift alcohol, and a teenager can find himself both drunk and in the hospital to be treated for alcohol poisoning.  Since 2010 in California, where this activity is most poplar, there have been nearly 3,000 reported cases.  Drinking this mixture can apparently cause liver, brain, and kidney damage, yet kids still continue to use the product

How do you think this can affect college students such as ourselves though?  Most college students such as myself are on a strict budget.  I find a penny on the ground, and call the day a good one.  In addition I like many of the students on this campus am under the age of 21, and thus cannot purchase alcoholic beverages at a liquor store.

Hand sanitizer is both a cheaper alternative to buying beverages such as beer, and can simply be bought at a convenience store.  You do not need to be 21, and thus it is a lot easier to obtain hand sanitizer than a handle of vodka.  

As a student I fear that this latest craze, which has become an epidemic in California, can soon be spread to college students including those who attend Penn State.  It comes down to the question of what would YOU do for alcohol? 

8 Comments

I find this article and video absolutely repulsive. If teens are this desperate for alcohol at this age, imagine what they'll be like when they are adults and out of college. Despite my strong opinion, this actually brings up a very good point. Because hand-sanitizer is predominately made of alcohol, percentages higher than normal vodka, this can become very dangerous. At a cheap price and no age requirement, it is possible for this to spread throughout collegiate and high school kids. Economically this makes sense, but this could tarnish an entire generation if it spreads.

While reading this article I was both shocked and disturbed. I wasn’t informed that college students were stooping so low to gain access to alcohol. However, I don’t feel too concerned about this spreading to Penn State. Maybe I am being too naïve but I think most students that attend PSU are smarter than drinking hand sanitizer to get drunk. If students want alcohol it isn’t hard for them to obtain even if they’re underage. Many people have some connection, whatever it may be, to get alcohol. I agree it is easier for underagers to get hand sanitizer than alcohol, but in a college setting it is still fairly easy to get hold of alcohol. Regardless, this is an interesting article and blog, but I’m not worried about Penn State students drinking sanitizer.

This is worrisome. The fact that kids are actually willing to drink this is gross. I think the more alarming part of this is that hand sanitizer uses the same type of alcohol that is used in alcoholic beverages. I was always under the impression that alcohol used for sanitizing purposes was the other type (methanol) of alcohol. What else are kids using as a substitute for vodka or beer? Is it really a problem here? Like the previous comments, I would hope that the students at Penn State would be a little smarter than that.

This is absolutely awful. Clearly these kids need a stern talking to. I do think this is a high school issue- not a college one. Let's be honest, no matter how old you are, alcohol is pretty easy to get around Penn State. High schoolers give into peer pressure and probably think what they're doing is cool. Sure normal ways of drinking alcohol are still dangerous, but this is taking it to a whole new level.

I was totally shocked when I read your blog. I've never heard of kids doing this. That's absolutely crazy and absurd that these kids are risking their lives just to get drunk and get alcohol in their system. It seems like an outrageous act of desperation. I don't understand then why, if they now know the severe consequences it can cause them, are they still doing it? But then again it's like smoking cigarettes, people know they dangers but still continue to smoke. It must be THAT addicting. Actually, this blog reminded me back in middle school I knew a couple of kids that LOVED to smell hand sanitizer. It was just the regular original one with just the scent of alcohol. They'd sniff it non stop and they said they'd get a little buzz from it if you inhaled it for a long time. I thought they were getting high and it always worried me that they were going to hurt themselves from that. A lot of them would get headaches but they kept on doing it. I wonder why they'd get a buzz from just sniffing it?

Not only have I never heard of this before, but I am actually in shock after reading your post. How can anyone be that desperate to drink alcohol, with such a high and elevated risk of serious damage to various parts of the body? I have heard of other "crazes" that are potentially extremely harmful as well, and every time that I hear of a new one I am equally shocked. For example, drinking "rubbing alcohol". This is extremely risky, but teenagers who are desperate for alcohol will go to these extreme lengths just to get "drunk". Looking into the effects of rubbing alcohol when drank, I found this article: http://www.ehow.com/how-does_5200289_effects-consuming-rubbing-alcohol.html

How ANY person could ever bring themselves to drink hand sanitizer, rubbing alcohol, or any other kind of extremely dangerous alcoholic substance is completely beyond me.

I can't say that I'm shocked or surprised. I feel you made a key point, Nicholas, about the culture that we, as well as these kids, are surrounded with on a daily basis. Think about it, we have movies that glorify the use of drugs: Super High Me, Half-Baked, Grandma's Boy, Trainspotting, Pulp Fiction, Scarface, Blow, etc. Of course this films are made for entertainment purposes, however, it still decreases the negative idea surrounding doing drugs. Like I said we shouldn't be surprised.

Also, I heard another thing kid's are doing to get a speed "rush." They mix a preworkout energy supplement like C4 with energy drinks.

I can't say that I'm shocked or surprised. I feel you made a key point, Nicholas, about the culture that we, as well as these kids, are surrounded with on a daily basis. Think about it, we have movies that glorify the use of drugs: Super High Me, Half-Baked, Grandma's Boy, Trainspotting, Pulp Fiction, Scarface, Blow, etc. Of course this films are made for entertainment purposes, however, it still decreases the negative idea surrounding doing drugs. Like I said we shouldn't be surprised.

Also, I heard another thing kid's are doing to get a speed "rush." They mix a preworkout energy supplement like C4 with energy drinks.

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