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Why Poppers are banned?

Poppers. Stock image.
Poppers banned? Stock image.

Why Poppers are banned? A concern for potential health risks or an indictment of gay community lifestyle? 

Amyl nitrite, popularly known as poppers, is a common drug that is widely used within the gay community to enhance organism or as a muscle relaxant. Other common names for poppers are butyl nitrite, liquid gold, room deodorizer, and heart medicine. A common form of poppers is amyl nitrite (not to be confused with amyl nitrate, which is a completely different substance). People started using this drug in the 1960s, mainly as a heart medicine. 

Nowadays, poppers are rarely used for heart issues. Instead, they are used as recreational drugs within the gay circle. Poppers are usually inhaled as fumes, but their uses carry some health risks. The drug can also be used with other designer drugs such as ecstasy and acid (LSD). Please note that this form of use could be for other benefits other than sensual enhancement. 

Positive effects

When used in the right proportions, poppers can give intense effect, which usually last for seconds to a few minutes. Generally, poppers act fast, and users often get instant warm sensation accompanied by feelings of dizziness. In short, a person will start feeling a sense of relaxation, euphoria, dizziness, mood elevation, and sometimes intoxication.

Being vasodilators, use of poppers can result in a drop in blood pressure. This condition will result in lightheadedness due to a brief loss of muscle strength and consciousness. Poppers can relax the anal sphincter. For this reason, most gay people prefer to use poppers just before becoming intimate. In some instances, poppers have been reported to increase climax. It is best to know how to use poppers before any consideration to actually using them.

Side effects of poppers

Sniffing poppers can have significant negative health risks. If you have anemia or health condition, you should refrain from poppers. They can cause a drastic drop in blood pressure, so you should avoid them if you have issues with your blood pressure. Besides this, swallowing poppers is highly prohibited. Some cases of death have been reported because of the improper use of the drug. The drug can also cause abnormal heart rhythm, which can be fatal. Be aware that poppers are inflammable, if they are inhaled in large quantities, they can cause rashes on your mouth and nose. 

Where to buy poppers

Poppers are found in a majority of adult shops, and they are normally sold as intimate enhancers or room deodorizer. Some shops prefer to sell them behind the counters, mostly with misleading labels such as nail polish remover or leather cleaner. 

Why poppers are seen as harmful drugs

In the recent past, several countries have pledged to ban poppers. For instance, Australia Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), an equivalent of FDA in the US, proposed a ban on Amyl nitrite. Supply of poppers in the US and the UK is usually treated as an offense. Health Canada has also raised concern about the potential misuse of the drug. 

However, some professionals in the medical and legal sector see such restrictions as a punishment of the gay community. Dr. McKay, a men’s health expert from Sydney GP believes that criminalizing poppers is more likely to result in injuries among bisexual men and gay. Likewise, a majority of people within the gay community see the move as an infringement of their rights

The use of poppers for recreational purposes has been part of the gay culture, so categorizing them with other dangerous drugs such as heroin is likely to wipe off the product from retail stores. Poppers proponents believe that a better intervention would be to increase focus on peer-based education. 

For potential users, poppers are generally safe and easy buzz. They are also cheap and easily available. However, just like a majority of psychoactive drugs, they can have devastating effects, especially if used under certain medical condition. If unsure of your health, it is better to avoid them.