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Monitoring emerging toxicology trends using social media: Eyeballing, vaportinis, and funneling

Published:January 04, 2018DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajem.2018.01.018
      Alcohol is by far the most widely used psychoactive drug in the United States. Recent estimates indicate that approximately 73% of adults have consumed an alcoholic beverage within the previous 12 months [
      • Dawson D.A.
      • Goldstein R.B.
      • Saha T.D.
      • Grant B.F.
      Changes in alcohol consumption: United States, 2001–2002 to 2012–2013.
      ]. Traditionally consumed orally as a liquid, new trends for administering alcohol in novel ways have been spreading via social media. Inhalation of vaporized alcohol, soaking tampons in alcohol and inserting them vaginally, alcohol enemas, and “eyeballing” are just a few of the innovative methods of using alcohol. These techniques may have originated to avoid alcohol on the breath, reduce consuming calories and carbohydrates, experience a more intense intoxication or to simply achieve inebriation more rapidly [
      • Stogner J.M.
      • Eassey J.M.
      • Baldwin J.M.
      • Miller B.L.
      Innovative alcohol use: assessing the prevalence of alcohol without liquid and other non-oral routes of alcohol administration.
      ]. However, each technique comes with health risks which may not be widely known to the public. Social platforms, including video sharing websites, provide a venue for teens and young adults to freely share their experiences, as well as post questions, comments, and opinions about different drugs. With over a billion users world-wide, YouTube reaches more 18 to 34-year olds than any television network [
      • YouTube
      YouTube for press.
      ]. As a result, misleading or dangerous misinformation can be spread rapidly through video-sharing. The primary aim of this study was to characterize the content and popularity of dangerous trends involved in alcohol consumption by teens and adults on the video-sharing Web site YouTube.

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      References

        • Dawson D.A.
        • Goldstein R.B.
        • Saha T.D.
        • Grant B.F.
        Changes in alcohol consumption: United States, 2001–2002 to 2012–2013.
        Drug Alcohol Depend. 2015; 148: 56-61
        • Stogner J.M.
        • Eassey J.M.
        • Baldwin J.M.
        • Miller B.L.
        Innovative alcohol use: assessing the prevalence of alcohol without liquid and other non-oral routes of alcohol administration.
        Drug Alcohol Depend. 2014; 142: 74-78
        • YouTube
        YouTube for press.
        https://www.youtube.com/intl/en-GB/yt/about/press/
        Date: 2017
        Date accessed: December 13, 2017