Indian youth have found a way to get a kick out of the most unthinkable substances- just to escape from reality for a temporary blissful time. Recently, according to a report, the youth of Durgapur have been drinking the residual liquid from condoms soaked in hot water.
In West Bengal, shopkeepers apparently got suspicious when flavored condoms started selling like hot cakes in areas like Durgapur City Centre, Bidhannagar, Benachiti, and Muchipara, C zone, and A zone. A shopkeeper had casually inquired a customer about the reason behind the popularity of flavored condoms, and the youth replied that his reason was getting sloshed.
Apparently, the youth of Durgapur is not interested in condoms for their usual function- birth control. They allegedly soak the flavored condoms in hot water overnight and then gulp down the liquid. This gives them a high lasting around 10-12 hours.
Nurul Haque, a chemistry teacher at Durgapur RE College model school, said, “Soaking condoms in hot water for a long time breaks down large organic molecules and creates alcohol compounds. This compound is keeping the youth intoxicated.”
In a better analysis of the components of condoms, they contain the synthetic resin polyurethane for durability and stretching purposes. They make use of glycerin to render specific flavors to the condoms. Udayan Basak, a polymer chemistry research scholar, extended this information.
Basak further said, “It is believed that ethylene glycol, a kind of alcohol, is produced when the polyurethane breaks down after boiling flavored condoms in water and (keeping them aside) for six to eight hours.”
Experts claimed that the buzz created by soaked condom water can be compared to the high from sniffing glue. This can produce a temporary sense of euphoria and hallucination, albeit the fact that it usually lasts only a few minutes.
Other such weird daily life substances that Indians use as intoxicants number quite a lot. For instance, there are easily available household items like cough syrup, whitener, nail polish, iodex in bread, aftershave, sanitizer, and whatnot.
The Hyderabad police had claimed an alarming rise in abuse of sedatives cheaper than alcohol and accordingly warned medical shops of selling these without prescription. Stationary shopkeepers are also wary of selling whiteners to suspicious persons.
Joydeep Ghosh, an internal medicine consultant based in Kolkata, explained how consuming condom water can be harmful. “Drinking this water can cause intoxication and addiction. If consumed repeatedly, it will negatively impact the lungs and kidneys, as well as harm the body’s nervous system,” he said.
Similarly, sniffing glue and other inhalants like spray paint and cleaning fluids can be detrimental to one’s health. They entail long-term effects like kidney damage, hearing loss, bone marrow damage, loss of coordination, limb spasms, and brain damage, as put forth by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.
There is no substantial proof that West Bengal youth are getting high on soaked condom water, as till now, it is based on shopkeepers’ accounts. Even so, the police need to be wary of such substance abuse which can be fatal for young lives.
Disclaimer: This article is fact-checked
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