These questions were answered by more than 50 individual scientists and science writers with expertise in addiction. To get as many answered as possible, responses were written quickly based on the personal background and knowledge of each expert. Please note that there was not a secondary review or proofreading of each fact, and if readers have questions or comments about any response, they can ask further questions.

Download Full Year

can you get high from eating weed if so will it make your breath smell bad

-GW, Maryland

Hi GW! This is an interesting question. In states that have legalized marijuana, there are stores that sell "edibles" which can come in all types of candies and baked goods. Eating these products do cause a high, however, it is easy to eat too much, because it takes longer to feel the effects. That has put a lot of people into the emergency room with bad symptoms, especially children. There has been at least one death of a toddler reported because the parents left edibles around the house, and the toddler ate them. "high". Smoking marijuana probably causes your breath to smell worse than edible marijuana.

-Michelle Leff

Can you get high off of elmer's glue?

-Chapoopoo, Illinois

Hi Chapoopoo
I think that elmer's is water based. so i think it's unlikely. The closer to an industrial strength glue you get the more dangerous it is. It is a bad idea to huff any volatile solvent.

stay healthy

-Ruben Baler

Can you get high off of huffing gasoline?

-Superdood, Illinois

Thanks for your question Superdood. Gasoline is a household item that can be aubused by hudding/sniffing. It can produce hallucinatory effects and (not to mention hazardous effects too) on your brain and body. Here is link to learn more about inhallants:
https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/inhalants

-Steve Gust

can you get high off of huffing paint?

-wave check 1, Illinois

Hi Wave,
Yes, Huffing paint can deprive your brain of oxygen and can damage your brain, but can also make you light headed which some call a "high."

-Dave Thomas

Can you get high off of Ibuprofen pills?

-IO, Florida

Hi there. No. You can't get high from taking ibuprofen. However, you can be pretty sure that taking too much of anything is not safe. Ibuprofen is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, or NSAID. These drugs are very good at fighting fevers and relieving pain from arthritis, injuries, etc. Taking too many Ibuprofen can cause serious side effects, including kidney failure or stomach ulcers and bleeding.

-Roger Sorensen

can you get high off of sniffing sharpie?

-El Chapo, Illinois

Good question, El Chapo. Products like felt-tip markers, spray paints, glues, and cleaning fluids contain dangerous substances with mind-altering properties when inhaled. People don't typically think of these products as drugs because they are not intended for getting high, but some people use them for that purpose. When they do, these substances are called inhalants. Inhalants are mostly used by young kids and teens and are the only class of substance used more by younger than by older teens. Inhalants can cause slurred speech, lack of coordination and dizziness, as well as brain and organ damage, seizures, coma, and even death.

-Bethany Deeds

can you get high off of whipped cream bottles

-gabi, New Hampshire

Hi Gabi. Inhalant gases can be found in household or commercial products including whipped cream dispensers. When someone uses a whipped cream bottle to inhale these gases, the lungs absorb chemicals into the bloodstream sending them throughout the brain and body. Regular use of inhalants can cause serious harm to vital organs and systems besides the brain. Damage to these organs is not reversible even when the person stops abusing inhalants. Keep your body and brain safe and don't try inhalants!

-Katia Howlett

Can you get high off sharpies?

-Kevin, Illinois

Dear Kevin, Maybe you could get high on sharpies but why? Spend your time doing something really fun and cool like playing music, participating in a sport, acing a test at school, or volunteering in your community. More information on drug use and teens can be found at: https://teens.drugabuse.gov/

-Redonna Chandler

Does medical marijuana actually helpful or are doctors just handing it out.

-Bshields, Montana

Thats a good question. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved marijuana for any medical uses; the FDA has approved several components of marijuana for medical use, however, just not the whole plant. The distribution of "medical" marijuana in the states that have approved it is being done on very little scientific evidence. We'll see whether -- and if so, how -- good clinical research shows the many purported benefits of marijuana to be true.

-Aaron White

Does medical marijuana still have the same effects of non-medical marijuana

-Brevin Tating, California

Depends--people mean a lot of different things when they talk about "medical marijuana". If they are talking about products that contain high levels of THC (the ingredient that gets you high), then there's no real difference. But some people are talking about products that are high in cannabidiol (CBD) and have no or almost no THC in them. These are the products that are being used to treat seizures, e.g., in children. CBD is a very different chemical and doesn't seem to have many of the same risks as THC--its not addictive, doesn't mess with your memory, etc. The problem with CBD products that are widely available is that they are not Federally regulated and you risk getting something that is not what you think it is or that has not be manufactured safely. The exception is a recently approved medication (Epidiolex), for treating seizure disorders in children.

-Susan Weiss

does mixing diferent kinds of drugs affect my body in a different way than if i use them separately

-dj nini,

Hi dj nini! Yes, that can definitely happen. Different kinds of drugs affect different parts of the body - some may affect one organ or another and some affect many all at once. Sometimes mixing drugs can intensify their effects on one organ system or make you not aware of the effects on others. For example, alcohol is a depressant that can cause you to feel sleepy. When alcohol is mixed with caffeine, the caffeine can mask the depressant effects of alcohol, making you feel more alert and awake than you would if you were only drinking alcohol. As a result, you may drink more alcohol and become more impaired than you realize, increasing your risk of a lot of negative consequences.

-Michelle Jobes

Does nicotine affect athletic play for better or worse? I have teammates that are all juuling before games and telling all of us who don't, that we should do it, because it helps their game and would help ours- they think they are faster and more accurate.. I thought they played worse than normal in our last tournament and we got a lot of "conduct calls" from them mouthing off on the field.

-madchrist7, California

This is a great question, madchrist7! When nicotine enters the body, it initially causes the adrenal glands to release a hormone called adrenaline. The rush of adrenaline stimulates the body and causes an increase in blood pressure, heart rate, and breathing, which may be why your teammates think they are performing better. However, long-term brain changes brought on by continued nicotine exposure from tobacco products, such as Juul, result in addiction. A person can develop tolerance to nicotine, which means that he/she no longer responds to the drug in the way that person initially responded and needs more nicotine to get the same effect. When a person tries to quit, he or she may have withdrawal symptoms, including:irritability, problems paying attention, trouble sleeping, increased appetite, and powerful cravings for tobacco. To learn more about tobacco, nicotine and e-cigs, see https://teens.drugabuse.gov/drug-facts/tobacco-nicotine-e-cigarettes

-Shwe Gyaw

Does people under 18 years old shouldn't drink because of health issues or because of responsibility and immatureness

-Mendhoza,

The teenage years are a time to learn how to have fun and cope with life in healthy ways. It is also a time of intense brain development. It's best to avoid alcohol until the legal age of 21 to allow the brain to reach its full potential. The chances of developing problems with alcohol are much lower when people wait until the legal age to drink. NIAAA's Underage Drinking fact sheet has more info: https://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/UnderageDrinking/UnderageFact.htm

-Emily Einstein

does redbull and cocaine fix your problems

-MG, Montana

Hi mg
hardly. for starters, redbull is legal and if you drink it responsible it's unlikely to fix your problems (although I don't know what your probelms are) or create serious ones. ON the other hand, cocaine is illegal and it can definitely get you into a whole lot of trouble.

-Shwe Gyaw

does second-hand smoking have the same effects as smoking?

-kelly, Arizona

Hi kelly,

There are real risks linked to exposure to secondhand smoke. Every year tens of thousands of Americans die from exposure to secondhand smoke. And those exposed risk some of the other diseases that smokers can suffer from.

The good news is that we are seeing the lowest record rates of smoking in teens and adults. The bad news is that each year almost 500,000 Americans die prematurely from tobacco use...and almost all of that is from firsthand and secondhand exposure to cigarette smoke.

-Mitch Zeller

does smoking affects concentration?

-Olatunji,

Smoking what? Marijuana certainly affects concentration and makes it difficult to learn new things and remember them. Tobacco--less so, but it has other health risks as I'm sure you are very aware.

-Aaron White

do you like your job.

-Alfonso, Illinois

I LOVE my job!!! This chat day thing is a lot of fun! Plus, we support a lot of cool research that can help people. I like cool sceince!

-Dave Thomas

do you play fortnite?

-LB, Oregon

Nope, and when I asked around about it, I got laughed at. Seems everyone knows about it but me. Hmm, maybe I should look into it?

-Jinhee Lee

Do you see school districts with 'tip lines' used by students as a way to get help

-BMS, Oklahoma

Hey Bixby Middle School, I don't know of any school based "tip lines" in your area to assist teens with drug use and other issues but that is a great idea and could be a helpful resource. You might want to talk with teachers, your guidance counselor, or principal about resources and your ideas. More information about drugs can be found at on NIDA's teen site: https://teens.drugabuse.gov/drug-facts. If you are interested in resources about drug treatment see treatment: https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/treatment-approaches-drug-addiction

-Redonna Chandler

do you snort Heroine?

-D, Illinois

Hi D
Personally? no, i don't. And I don't recommend anybody doing it either.
Try to respect your brain, It's the only one you've got, and you need it to achieve your full potential.
best of luck

-Ruben Baler

Do you support the use of medical marijuana?

-Sunny, Illinois

I support research to figure out whether marijuana or its components can be used medically. We need to know more, but there's certainly lots of reasons to think that there is medical potential if we can figure out the right ingredients, doses, delivery methods, and conditions to use it for.

-Susan Weiss

Do you think alcohol should be illegal, if it doesn't has anything good?

-Pichimimi,

Hi Pichimimi,
In the U.S., it's not legal for folks under 21 years of age to drink alcohol. The harmful effects of alcohol on the teen brain are well known.
In adults and teens, binge drinking - drinking too much and too quickly - can cause alcohol to accumulate in your body and increase the risk of damage to the brain, liver and other organs. Alcohol overdose is a serious problem. Check out this fact sheet on Alcohol Overdose for more information.

Hope this helps!
- Vijay

-Vijay Ramchandani

Do you think alcohol should be illegal?

-Pichimimi,

Hello Pichimimi,

This is a complicated question, I do not believe alcohol should be illegal, but that doesn't mean it can't be harmful. Having an addiction to alcohol puts a person at risk for many diseases including cancer, and it can have devastating effects on the lives of people who suffer from it and their family members. When alcohol was illegal, people still made it and used it so that did not solve problem of alcohol addiction. See more here: https://www.drugabuse.gov/drugs-abuse/alcohol

Thanks,
Roger

-Roger Little

do you think it is hard for some people to say no to drugs

-Tas, Montana

Hi Tas - When it comes down to it if you have friends who are pressuring you to do something you don't really want to, perhaps they aren't friends after all. NIDA has a Drug and Health Blog post about peer pressure here: https://teens.drugabuse.gov/blog/post/i-wish-that-i-could-be-like-the-co... that may be useful. It's also helpful to be equipped with facts to help you make decisions that are right for you, so here is some information about the health effects of drugs on NIDA's teen site: https://teens.drugabuse.gov/drug-facts. Surround yourself with peers who will support you no matter what!

-Roger Little

do you think Marijuana should be legal -LTHS

-D, Illinois

Hello D at LTHS! Great question. Legalization of marijuana for adult recreational use and for medicinal purposes is currently the subject of much public debate, and policy makers must consider a lot factors, including how marijuana affects health and whether or not it contributes to other drug use. There is still a lot we don't know. States are testing policies for both ‘medical' and recreational use of marijuana. Whatever happens, public health experts are worried that these changing policies could lead to more use among teens. Regular marijuana use as a teen may harm the developing brain – making learning and memory worse – and can impair the ability to drive safely (especially when combined with alcohol). Researchers are currently investigating questions such as these as we speak..

-Marsha Lopez

do you think that the adict's emotions are as big a factor as his physical attributes when they want to quit?

-alumno33-12,

Hello - this is an important question. Thanks for participating in Chat Day and asking this. Emotion and stress are incredibly important factors to consider in recovery - see what some of the science says about this:
, Continued Drug Use, and Relapse | National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

-Ruben Baler

Do you think that the positive effects of marijuana outweigh the negative effects?

-LeF507749, Illinois

Good question, LeF507749! No, I don't. Even if someone finds that marijuana boosts their mood and relaxes them, those positive effects to my mind are outweighed in the short term by the drug's effect of dulling thinking and memory, and symptoms of irritabilty and low mood that can occur as the drug leaves their system; and in the long term by potential disruption of normal brain development and addiction. Marijuana can impair school performance and driving, and reduce life satisfaction and motivation. Nor does everyone who tries marijuana experience any positive effects. Some people experience anxiety instead of relaxation, and some have sought treatment in emergency rooms, reporting unease and shaking, anxiety, paranoia, or hallucinations, and in rare cases, extreme psychotic reactions. So I'd say, no, there is not a net benefit to using marijuana, especially for teens.

-Michele Rankin

Do you think the combination of alcoholic beverages an other drug substances is the reason our death rates increase each year?

-JE, South Carolina

Great question JE! Combining alcohol with drugs, even some prescription drugs used as directed, can cause drug interactions that are dangerous and may lead to deaths. If you go to our website or the CDC website you can look up rates of overdose deaths due to drugs or alcohol but I'm not sure that we have rates on cases involving both drugs AND alcohol. Keep an eye out for updates on our site for that information. Thanks for your question!

-Aria Crump

DO you think the number of drugs will increase over the next 5 years

-Angela-FVSU4H, Georgia

yes--many clever chemists out there... we know alot about the chemical structure of addictive drugs, so people can play around with those and keep coming up with new drugs with unknown risks, as long as there's a demand for them.

-Susan Weiss

do you think the number of drugs will increase over the next 5 years?

-nyla-fvsu4h, Georgia

Hey Nyla- This is an interesting question! Something we've noticed recently about the drug supply is that there are many more illegal synthetic (or human-made) drugs than ever before, and new versions with slight tweaks to the chemical structure are popping up all the time. So yes, the number of drugs does seem to be increasing.

-Emily Einstein