WHAT ARE POPPERS?
"Poppers" has been a prescription medicament in the USA for several decades. However, other substances have been used for nearly 30 years as the primary ingredients in consumer products such as liquid insense, liquid aroma and videohead cleaner. The most popular among these are Rush, Hardware, Reds, Quicksilver, Ram, Rave, Rockhard, Kix and Manscent.
There are also numerous off brands as well. Sold in small glass bottles, they are often misused as inhalants by the consumer, who removes the cap and places the bottle to his/her nose and inhales the vapors. The effect is immediate and pleasurable to most people (though some people report headaches). In some sexbars, -saunas or -clubs the bottles are left opened to fill the room with the odour to make people more willing. Many researchers have said that these products are the closest thing to a true aphrodisiac that exists (there are no true aphrodisiacs, in the sense that they'll create a sex drive if it doesn't already exist, but these products will greatly enhance it if it does).
With respect to the pharmacology, when inhaled these products do only one thing : namely, they relax smooth muscle. It is smooth muscle that surrounds the body's blood vessels. When allowed to relax, the bloodpressure sinks, the vessels must fill up with more blood, thus the heart races to fill the space (similar to the plumbing in your house; if the pipes suddently got bigger, the water would have to be pumped faster to fill up the expanded space).
As a result, the increase in blood flow gives most people a number of heightened sensations, the most notable being a dizzy sensation, a heightened sense of touch and taste, and in the case of sexual activity, a real rush that makes it seem that orgasm is greatly enhanced and extended in duration. These effects last only about 3 - 5 minutes or so, which means most users continued to inhale from the small bottle throughout the sex act, to enhance the activity.
These products are very popular in discos and bars as well, where users inhaled from them to supposedly better enjoy the sensations around them also in combination with other substances or psychadelics. With respect to safety, it has been shown that these products appear to be perfectly safe. There was some concern at the onset of the AIDS crisis back in the early 1980's, that these products were related to AIDS and that it affected the immune system.
However, those old theories have been discredited. The result of that early hysteria, though, caused Congress to ban the sale of these products in the USA in 1990. (an anti-gay lobby was questionable) The ban has been ineffective, since you can still buy these products around the USA in most adultstores under different names. There are a number of mailorder houses selling them on the internet, as well. Because of this ban and disinformation there are a lot of different laws and tolerances in many States, country's etc. and also many bad working and noxious products. There's no evidence of long-term psychological or physical damage as a result of commonsense use of poppers, but there are some risks...
ARE THEY DANGEROUS?
There's a little change of a short headache or a little blackout.Excessive use can cause anaemia.
If the liquid contacts the skin, it irritates and can develop a rash around the lips, cheeks and nose.
Poppers are highly inflammable, so be carefull with cigarettes or lighters.
Anyone with aenemia, glaucoma, hemorroids, a bad heart condition or in pregnancy, should avoid the use of poppers at all cost.
Never swallow, cause it may result in a reduction of oxygen in the blood.
NEVER use poppers and VIAGRA at the same time ! They both lower the bloodpressure, this can be dangerous (see also the inf. leaflet to Viagra).
ARE POPPERS LEGAL?
GAZ POPPERS WHOLESALE
The possession or use of poppers is not illegal in the USA, Austria, United-Kingdom, Germany, Netherlands, Japan, France, Suisse and a lot of other country's, but check your local law if you want to distribute them.
Store your poppers cold and dark in a refridgerator, because the compound will disintegrate by roomtemperature and the effect will decline. After you take the bottle out of the fridge, beware the liquid for the moist on the bottle which will appear because of the contact between roomtemperature and the cold glass. If this moist contacts the liquid the compound will change after a while in a bad smelling liquid and the effect will reduce fast. So let the bottle get to roomtemperature first before opening it, this will take about 15 minutes. Some brands do have a small ceramic pellet inside the bottle which is not ment for shaking, but to bind eventually watermolecules so they can't affect the compound. If you are able to keep your poppers clean and dry you will have most fun with the amyl ones, because of the strong effect and the slower evaporating.
The difference in strength between poppers general are not that much, so try several to find out which one works personally best for you. Beware of housebrands or own mixings and watch out for copies which won't work and might harm you. Only the real, original sealed, registered brands are garanteed clean and pure. Look out for the ® and ™ signs on the bottle. Pure poppers smells smooth with a pleasant and aromatic fragrance!
Poppers are allowed as a medicine for therapies with heartdiseases and therefore sold by pharmacys. When used or bought as roomodorizer, videoheadcleaner, leathercleaner or even as an addition for model-airplane gas (this all really works!!) then it is complete legal, because they are classified under a lawful chemical group. Poppers will lower the bloodpressure fast, when you have a bad bloodcirculation or a naturwise low bloodpressure we highly recommend not to use poppers, because you will, above all, notice the side-effects (headache, fainting), ofcourse only when you inhale them by mistake ;-) There are different species :
Some sorts are a little weaker brands which won't give you a headache and doesn't smell bad. (Manscent) Altough, these ones evaporates very fast so they're extremely inflammable!
Poppers got their name from the days when the drug came in small glass tubes, covered with fishnet, that made a popping noise when you broke them open and inhaled. Today - sold in record stores, clubs and porn shops as vinyl cleaner, liquid incense, room deodorizer, and video-head cleaner - the poppers come in a small bottle with a screw on cap.
Poppers are butyl or amyl nitrate. Nitrates improve blood flow through blocked arteries. Amyl and butyl nitrites (also known as "poppers") increase your heart rate, dilate your arteries and cause your blood pressure to drop. This produces a "rush" as your heart struggles to keep blood flowing to your brain. This can be enjoyable, albeit brief, because you experience a warm flash and intense sexual desire. The effects usually last about 30 seconds to 1 minute, but no more than 2 minutes. Side effects usually include headaches, nausea, coughing and dizziness. Sometimes it can result in loss of consciousness. Amyl nitrite is also flammable, so keep it away from lighters, cigars, cigarettes, candles and guys who are so hot they're on fire!
Since most people sniff poppers, persistent use can cause burns around your nose. Although poppers are not physically addictive, some people can develop a psychological addiction to poppers, feeling that they can't have sex unless they use them. Popper use can be dangerous or even fatal if you are on anti-depressants, or heart disease or blood pressure medication. Do not use them if you are anemic or suffer from glaucoma. In fact, poppers used in combination with any other drug can be life threatening. Poppers also lower your immune system response for days following use, so it can increase your chances of catching HIV and other STDs.
Using Viagra and poppers together is extremely dangerous. Both drugs dilate your blood vessels causing your blood pressure to drop so low that your brain and heart can't get enough oxygen to function. Guess what happens then? It's time for the defibrillator… clear!!!
Another drug commonly used with Viagra is ecstasy. For those of you who don't know, ecstasy (methylene-dioxymethylamphetamine, or MDMA) is a party drug, a stimulant that produces a euphoric sensation and empathic feelings in those who use it. The effects can last anywhere between 3 to 5 hours, with the peak sensation kicking in about 1 hour after taking it. Ecstasy causes your brain to release massive amounts of the brain chemical serotonin. Serotonin is a mood stabilizer, usually associated with feelings of elation and happiness. The high wears off once your brain is out of serotonin, and taking more ecstasy will not help you to get the high back because your brain needs time to make more serotonin. This sometimes causes people to "crash," feeling depressed and fatalistic once the effects of ecstasy have worn off. This is because there is no more serotonin left in your brain to balance your mood.
Aside from the crash, some people have experienced heat stroke. This is usually the result of using ecstasy and then dancing for hours on end without drinking water. Some people have died from taking ecstasy, even for the first time! The quality of ecstasy varies. It is taken in pill form, and is often mixed with other drugs, or fillers. These can be even more dangerous than ecstasy, including speed and PCP. Mixing drugs is a recipe for disaster. The Web site DanceSafe.org is dedicated to giving accurate information about ecstasy use, including pill testing by region to see if anyone is selling or using dirty ecstasy in your neck of the woods.
"Sexstasy" is a Viagra-ecstasy drug combo. The Viagra is intended to counteract the effects of ecstasy, which includes a loss of libido. Viagra can give you a boost. Again, mixing drugs is dangerous. The ecstasy causes a massive bio-chemical reaction in your brain. It can also cause dehydration. Viagra sends blood to your dick. Once again, that means less is going to your heart and brain, and your blood pressure drops. Vigorous activity like dancing and fucking make your heart work over time. Lack of blood and replenishing other bodily fluids can lead to heat stroke, heart attack and even death.
Drug use also impairs judgment. You might be less likely to use condoms when you're feeling particularly "friendly" to someone on ecstasy. Also, taking Viagra in combination with ecstasy increases your chance of developing a Priapism. Many who have taken sexstasy reported having an erection for hours.
So remember, if you're going to use Viagra, make sure to get a doc's stamp of approval first, and steer clear if you have any heart conditions that may cause problems. Don't use Viagra to get it up after drugs and alcohol get you down. That can really fuck you up, and not in a good way. If you're going to use poppers don't mix with other drugs and alcohol. Remember: fuck smart, fuck safe!
For more info on party drugs check out "Drugs In Partyland"
Here are the results of a recent community survey used to assess what guys felt about poppers:
2006 Poppers Survey
Gay Men, Drug Use and HIV Workgroup
Total Respondents = 276Demographics
Age Ethnicity Sexual Identity Location HIV Status
19-25 12% White 82% Gay 90% Seattle 71% HIV+ 19%
26-35 28% Latino 7% Bi 7% In WA 16% HIV- 72%
36-45 36% Afr-Am 5% Hetero 3% Out WA 13% HIV? 9%
46-55 16% Asian 5% -- -- --
56+ 8% Pac Is 2% -- -- --
What is your personal opinion about poppers?
Nearly half (48%) of guys had a favorable attitude towards popper. Either they liked using them, or thought it was okay for others to use. One-third (35%) felt negatively. 16% had neutral opinions.They're great 16%
I think they're OK to use now and then 32%
Don't like them 35%
Never used, so don't really know 8%
Don't care 8%
Very few men don’t know what poppers are.
Neutrality about poppers decreases as men age. Greatest shift from neutral to either pro- or anti-poppers happens from ages 26-35 to ages 36-45. Men age 46-55 have the most favorable attitude towards poppers.
HIV-positive men have slightly more favorable attitudes than HIV-negative men (55% vs. 46%), and are less neutral about poppers. Is this also a function of age?
Attitudes are often discordant with actual use. many men who expressed favorable attitudes had never themselves used or had stopped using after going into recovery. Several men said they “hated” poppers but still used them (and expressed anger that they did). Many men said poppers were OK for others to use although they themselves chose not to.
I feel that I know the facts about poppers.
This was pretty much divided evenly. One-third feels unknowledgeable or uncertain. One-third feels somewhat knowledgeable. One-third feels knowledgeable.Yes 34%
Some, but would like more 36%
Not sure 17%
HIV-positive men and men age 46-55 feel most knowledgeable (52% and 49%, total average 34%).
Confidence in knowledge about poppers increases steadily with age. Nearly one-half of men 19-25 said they don’t know the facts or feel uncertain about them (highest percentage of all age groups).
Confidence in knowledge about poppers increases with use of poppers. The more men use poppers, the more they feel they know about them.
I think poppers are associated with:* - correct answer Yes No Not sure
Kaposi's Sarcoma 12% 36%* 48%
Increased risky sex 70%* 14% 16%
Increased HIV risk 59%* 20% 21%
Rectal tearing 34%* 29% 37%
Erectile dysfunction/impotence 32% 27% 41%*
Suppressed immune system 42%* 20% 38%
Dangerous with ED drugs 71%* 6% 22%
Blindness 14% 42% 44%*
The majority of men correctly know that popper are associated with increased risky sex (70%), HIV risk (59%) and that they are dangerous to use with erectile dysfunction drugs (71%).
The risks with the least consensus (no clear majority opinion) include rectal tearing, erectile dysfunction, and suppressed immune system.
The risks men feel least certain about include Kaposi’s sarcoma (48%), blindness (44%), and erectile dysfunction (41%). None of these are associated with poppers use (blindness was a “red herring”), so uncertainty is reasonable.
Which sub-group is most accurate in its knowledge? Difficult to say as it depends on the risk and the sub-group’s familiarity with that risk.
Non-users and men age 19-25 feel the most unsure about associated risks.
Users, HIV-positive men, and men age 36-45 are least likely to agree with risks (same groups that said they felt the most confident about their knowledge).
o HIV-positive men are twice as likely to think this is a risk
o Almost one-half are not sure about KS, or what it actually is?
Increased risky sex
o Users are more likely to disagree
o Non-users, men age 19-25, and men age 46-55 agree with this risk
o Users are twice as likely to disagree that this is a risk
o Users almost twice as likely disagree with this risk
o Not much variance
Suppressed immune system
o HIV-positive men are more likely to agree this is a risk
Dangerous with erectile dysfunction drugs
o Men age 19-25 are less likely to agree this is a risk (maybe because they don’t use ED drugs as much?)
o Most groups disagree or are unsure about this as a risk (this question was a “red herring”)
Do you think it’s possible to become dependent on poppers for sex? A greater number of men think dependence is possible.Yes 41%
Not sure 12%
Non-users (50%) and men age 36-45 (46%) are more likely to agree.
Users (28%), HIV-positive men (23%), and men 36-45 (23%) are more likely to disagree.
Non-users are the most unsure of dependence (22% vs. 12%)
Men who think dependency is possible are 2 – 3 times less likely to be using poppers.
Men who don’t think dependency is possible are 4 – 5 times more likely to be using poppers.
If I wanted more info about poppers, I would go to:Internet 82%
Gay/HIV organization 39%
Gay mag/news 15%
Baths resource 11%
The overwhelming majority of men would use the Internet to find information; this is consistent across all sub-groups. A portion of this was an online survey.
Doctors, healthcare providers, and gay/HIV organizations are important sources of information.
Gay print media and the resource areas at bathhouses are not effective sources of information. Users are slightly more likely to utilize baths resources (18% vs. 11%)
Which websites would you use? The majority of men would do a general search on Google or Yahoo.Google or Yahoo 55%
Don't know 12%
Web MD 7%
The Body.com or other HIV site 4%
HIV-positive men would use HIV related or medical sites more than other men (21% vs. 4%)
Outside Google or Yahoo, there is no clear site preference.
Do you think gay men need better info about poppers and their risks? The overwhelming majority think men need better information. This is consistent across all sub-groups.Yes 72%
Not sure 3%
100% of men age 19-25 said yes or maybe.
How often do you use poppers? Most men don’t use poppers.Daily 2%
Every few months 18%
Quit using 16% Why: Side effects/health problems 42%
In recovery 21%
Tired of them 13%
Fear of consequences 11%
Only experimented 8%
Poppers use is more prevalent among men ages 26-45 than other ages.
Frequency of poppers use varies somewhat evenly from weekly to monthly to every few months.
HIV-positive men are only slightly more likely than HIV-negative men to be currently using (48% vs. 42%), especially among men ages 36-45 (64%) and ages 46-55 (55%). HIV-positive men are more likely to quit using poppers due to personal recovery from all drug use (38%) than HIV-negative men (17%) or men in general (21%).
Do you use poppers for: Always Sometimes Rarely Never
Topping 10% 28% 16% 46%
Being a bottom 20% 29% 16% 35%
Oral sex 7% 24% 13% 56%
Vaginal sex 1% 1% 1% 97%
Dancing 4% 8% 88%
Other 7% 12% 14% 67%
More men use poppers to be a bottom than to top.
About one-half of men chose a combination of bottom/top/oral.
What do you like about poppers? Men like the head rush from poppers more so than any one sexual effect. This is especially true for men ages 19-25 (88% vs. 64%).Head rush 64%
Easier/less painful to get fucked 46%
Better orgasm 46%
Less inhibited sex 40%
More connected w/partner 22%
Better erection 17%
Easier to use condoms 3%
Other (get aroused, sex more exciting, fisting) 17%
The most enjoyed sexual effects include better orgasm (46%), easier or less painful to be fucked (46%), and reduced inhibitions (40%). Enhanced erection is not a primary sexual benefit for most men.
What other drugs do you sue before, with, or right after poppers? The vast majority of men using poppers are not using them regularly or even occasionally with other drugs or alcohol. Always Sometimes Rarely Never
Alcohol 4% 38% 13% 45%
Viagra/Cialis 3% 18% 5% 74%
Crystal meth 1% 8% 9% 82%
Ecstasy 1% 7% 8% 84%
Cocaine -- 6% 2% 92%
GHB 1% 1% 3% 95%
Ketamine -- 1% 1% 98%
Heroin -- 1% -- 99%
The drugs most likely to be always or sometimes used with popper are alcohol (4% always, 38% sometimes) and ED drugs (3% always, 18% sometimes).
Co-use of crystal meth, cocaine, or ecstasy is far less common. There is almost no co-use of GHB, ketamine or heroin.
Prevalence of other drugs use increases with age, especially Viagra. Co-use of alcohol peaks during ages 36045; crystal meth use is most prevalent in men ages 26-35 and 46055 (similar levels); cocaine and ecstasy use is most prevalent in men ages 19-25.
Cocaine use is not more prevalent among African-American men as might be expected.
HIV-positive men are more likely to be co-using drugs with poppers. Although prevalence of alcohol use is similar, HIV-positive men are 2 times more likely to be co-using ED drugs and 2-3 times more likely to be co-using with crystal meth.
Among men who said they always co-use ED drugs with poppers, 3 say they know it is dangerous to use them together. Among men who say they sometimes co-use ED drugs with poppers, 19 say they know it is