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Whew! You’re Probably Not Going to Get Addicted to Poppers


Though they can make you feel euphoric, and sometimes a little woozy if you overdo it, alkyl nitrites (just say “poppers”) apparently pose very little chance of addiction according to a new study. So, let’s celebrate that.

Commonly used by gay and bisexual men during sex — tops, bottoms, apparently there’s room for everybody in this house — poppers are generally inhaled through the nose from small glass bottles. Whether Jungle Juice, Rush or Double Scorpio is your pleasure, a new survey of more than 800 men found very little evidence of dependency characteristics. This means that people weren’t breaking the law to obtain them, running into debt in their pursuit, alienating or sabotaging friendships related to their experience, or even damaging their health. Only thing damaged up in here is [redacted].

The study also found that there was no connection between popper use and mental or psychological stress.

The study itself underscores a decision by the Therapeutic Goods Administration in Australia to overturn a 2018 ban on the over-the-counter sale of poppers. It had been made into a prescription-only drug, leading some to buy it illegally.

What we see with this research is that poppers are a very commonly used drug in the LGBT community, both recently and over their lifetime,” Dr. Daniel Demant, lead researcher at the University of Technology Sydney, who conducted the study, told Gay Star News. “Most of the users are already oppressed or marginalized based on their social identity as gay or bisexual men. This creates a question as to whether there would have been a discriminatory element in banning a substance with such a low risk profile.”

Turning the drug to the black market made the prices rise. Demant says that overturning could reverse that and bring a better quality of poppers onto the market in Australia, where they would be available in pharmacies.

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Tags: Health, sex

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