Waiter, One Bottle of Hand Sanitizer, Please

Unless you are a seasoned connoisseur of fine Scotch or whisky, drinking a proper alcoholic beverage may be a scorching experience that leaves a bad taste in your mouth.  Now, can you just imagine drinking a few pumps of hand sanitizer?

It appears to be one of the drinks of choice for young people in middle school through college.  When the H1N1 “pandemic” erupted last year, many public facilities were placing hand sanitizer dispensers within their facilities to reduce the chances of spreading germs.  However, many had to take them out as quickly as they put them in.  Why?  Because people were stealing the hand sanitizer bottles and bags for consumption.

There is a word of warning on every bottle of hand sanitizer, “for external use only”.  This has yet to stop someone looking for a quick feeling of intoxication.  Hand sanitizer contains may contain ethyl alcohol and/or isopropyl alcohol, ranging from 60% to 95% alcohol content.  Purell’s website reflects a 65% alcohol content in its hand sanitizer, and GermX shows 62%.  Ethyl alcohol is the same alcohol found in drinking alcohol; however, it is also found in perfumes, shaving lotions and mouthwash.

According to the American Association of Poison Control Centers, including our friend, the Southeast Texas Poison Control Center, there were nearly 12,000 cases of hand sanitizer ingestion poisonings in 2006.

Besides ingesting in a liquid form, hand sanitizer is also abused as an inhalant.  Young people are coating their hands with the hand sanitizer, covering their nose and mouth, then “huffing” deeply.  This is similar to inhaling spray paint or fingernail polish remover (see our prior blog on Substance Abuse In A Can – Inhalants).

Are you still having trouble believing this, knowing just the smell of hand sanitizer is bad enough, let alone the taste?  Check out these videos posted on YouTube – your eyes may be opened.

If you have experienced a situation involving hand sanitizer abuse, please share how you figured out what is going on.

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3 Responses to “Waiter, One Bottle of Hand Sanitizer, Please”


  1. 1 Hand sanitizer March 21, 2011 at 12:24 pm

    In many alcohol hand sanitizer alcohol percentage is higher than that in vodka. I have seen the impact of hand sanitizer alcohol in this video. Thanks for sharing the video.

  2. 3 Hand Sanitizer Dispenser April 12, 2011 at 11:08 am

    People those who are addicted and doesn’t satisfies with the amount of alcohol in vodka or wine they had started drinking Hand Sanitizer now days, as the amount of alcohol is much more than vodka or wine.


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