Kids getting wasted on hand sanitizer (still)


If I ever find my kids doing this, I’m going to teach them how to make their own alcohol gel with Everclear and calcium acetate and conceal it in hand sanitizer bottles.


Since 2010, poison control center hotlines across the United States have seen a nearly 400% increase in calls related to children younger than 12 ingesting hand sanitizer, according to new analysis by the Georgia Poison Center.

Those are “weasel stats”, without the actual numbers. A jump from 2 to 8 is a 400% increase, but it’s hardly meaningful. And anyone can just buy a bottle of isopropyl alcohol for a dollar or two, with no age restriction.


Not always, apparently- a Greek sailor became permanently and completely blind after accidentally drinking ‘a glass of 70% methanol rubbing solution’; and a teenage German fire eater was similarly affected after ‘a sudden episode of hiccough during fire eating caused accidental ingestion of denatured alcohol containing methanol’. Scary, huh?


I’d rate tequila as more palatable than hand sanitiser, but only just.


Many urban legends do.


Wow. That’s a genuinely impressive pointless and largely self-defeating policy. I knew that the DoD could be stubborn; but I would have thought that they’d cave to reality before they had people resorting to prison hooch recipies(at least probably not preparing it in toilets).


First cough syrup, and now hand sanitizer. Christ on a cross.
Bored kids are a danger to themselves- can’t we just keep them busy? You know, with enriching activities and sports and stuff?
Oh, right. Those things cost money. Can’t be spending money on kids like that.


Typical media. Why are we focusing on how drunk these kids are, and not how sanitary their GI tracts are?


Many years ago I recall reading that a particular brand of hair spray was being regularly abused in some communities.

[quote=“Ryuthrowsstuff, post:20, topic:65673”]Methyl however will cause blindness, and if I’m remembering it right you have to drink a lot or drink it regularly for the blindness to be permanent.[/quote]So, what the mechanism of action for methanol-induced blindness? One would expect that it would be much more likely to interact with the liver and everything else before reaching the eyes. Or are there just chemicals in the eye that are uniquely sensitive?


But then kids would just start washing their hands with vodka.

In my day kids would drink mouthwash in the same way. It’s not an urban legend, just rare because you have to be really hoping to springboard your career as an addict to be this desperate to get wasted. But really its a symptom that of a society that essentially says its a bad parent that even consumes an intoxicant in front of their children and leaves young adults completely on their own to figure this stuff out.


Alcohol dehydrogenase is the enzyme involved in alcohol metabolism. Other enzymes handle the resulting aldehydes:

Ethanol -> acetaldehyde -> acetic acid


Methanol -> formaldehyde -> formic acid


It does- as @GoatCheezInfrno says, the liver metabolises it relatively quickly to formic acid. Unfortunately formic acid is more toxic than methanol itself, and more slowly metabolised. It’s the formic acid that does the real damage, often a long time after ingesting the methanol.


Well from what I understand most of that has precedent way before Iraq. Jungle juice got its name in Vietnam (or so I’ve been told). Mechanics building stills is such a long standing tradition that my grandfather and great grandfather both told stories about guys doing it from WWI straight through peace time and well into the 90’s. Even stateside. It’s a combination of bored people with the right material and the difficulty or pointlessness of getting alcohol to the front.

In terms of not allowing it in dry countries it seems to be an old diplomatic decision. I’ve had family stationed in various parts of the mid east for two different governments throughout the 90’s , Iraq war and 00’s. Before during and after the most recent wars. In dry countries like Kuwait or Saudi Arabia alcohol was always banned. Though it seems like embassies and certain base’s officer’s clubs were excepted. I guess it makes sense to ignore the smuggling, moonshining and pruno when you know your troops will find an excuse to do it anyway.But once you start dropping bombs I think the diplomatic message is going to get lost.


It’s not just for kids, though. People recreationally do cough syrup that contains the disassociative DXM. Or did, I don’t know if they even sell that anymore due to abuse.


They still sell cough syrup with dextromethorphan. Nyquil is a popular brand. These days it’s usually a combo-drug though with something like 15mg DXM, a ton of Guaifenesin, and 325mg acetaminophen per dose.

The Guaifenesin and Acetaminophen make it practically suicide to try and abuse it, but there are other formulations with just DXM and Doxylamine Succinate.

In any case, I’m not too proud to admit that I’ve abused DXM when I was in high school. I do not recommend it.

DXM is a wretched drug that just isn’t worth abusing. Just remembering the body load alone makes my stomach upset, and my bowels twitch. Add in the fact that it WRECKS your liver like you won’t believe, and I can safely say it’s a stupid drug to play with.


Its entirely possible that the “drinking a lot of it” I’ve read about being a requirement includes any variety of drinking it straight. But from what I understand its relatively hard to get sufficient concentration of the stuff in home distilled booze to cause harm. The methanol distills at a lower temperature than the ethanol, which distills at a lower temperature than unpleasant “higher” alcohol like fusels. So you’ve got this concept of the foreshot/firsts, mid shot/mids, and aftershot/afters in distilling. Firsts and afters should either be discarded or processed separately for additional distillations. So basically for each round of distillation you’re pulling each sort of alcohol out at greater purity, using temperature to determine which is which. With the aim of discarding as much of the dangerous methyl, and unpleasant fusel (tastes like deisel and causes hang overs) alcohols as possible at the end. Apparently there shouldn’t be enough methanol in the total quantity of distillate to be harmful if its blended in with all the rest. And even if you keep it separated I’ve read it should need further concentration to be really dangerous. So basically you’ve got to be keeping your foreshot separate, then re-distilling it at higher concentration and keeping the foreshot off that separate. Then drinking that foreshot on its own. Best practice being to discard the foreshots from whatever you’re final round of distillation is, regardless of its source or what approach to refinement your using.

But then I haven’t tried any of this yet. I just periodically read up on it and dream of turning my fathers shed into an active ATF crime scene. People I may or may not know, but certainly do not approve of, tend to simply discard the firsts and thirds from any given distillation. Working purely with the mostly safe and ethanol heavy mids. Whether its one round of distillation or multiple.


Until they get MRSA and give it to Pope Francis; then we’ll all go to hell.


The proportion of methyl in grain spirits is so low as to be laughable. That’s a myth about distilling. The heads and tail are chucked primarily because they taste bad. The head has tiny amounts of methyl and other low temp, lightweight crap like acetones and other nasties. The tail has fats and unwanted esters. The middle, or heart, is where it’s at. And raw spirits should be cut to 80 to 100 proof to be drinkable, and should be aged on wood, preferably passed through a hardwood charcoal column beforehand.

Don’t distill wood, paper or fiber based alcohols. I mean, why?


“All it takes is just a few swallows”…that’s what they told me about learning to give a good BJ.


I would love to see some evidence that this goop offers any meaningful benefit over simple hand washing