People who abuse inhalants breathe in the vapors through their nose or mouth, usually in one of these ways:
- "Sniffing" or "snorting" fumes from containers
- Spraying aerosols directly into the nose or mouth
- Sniffing or inhaling fumes from substances sprayed or placed into a plastic or paper bag ("bagging")
- "Huffing" from an inhalant-soaked rag stuffed in the mouth
- Inhaling from balloons filled with nitrous oxide
Because the intoxication, or “high,” lasts only a few minutes, people who abuse inhalants often try to make the feeling last longer by inhaling repeatedly over several hours.