There has been a rapid increase in the sale of flavoured condoms across the Indian city of Durgapur, not for use as a contraceptive as one would expect, but due to a growing trend among the young who use them to get high.
The local news outlet, News 18, reported that on average four to six packets of flavoured condoms were usually sold per day per shop, but since the alarming new trend, entire packs are disappearing from shelves. A young man revealed to one of the local shopkeepers that he regularly buys condoms to get intoxicated.
According to Dheeman Mandal, who works at Durgapur Divisional Hospital, the flavoured condoms contain aromatic compounds that can be broken down to form alcohol that is extremely addictive.
Reports say to use the condom as an intoxicant, individuals are first soaking them in hot water for six to eight hours to release polyurethane, a type of plastic that is used to make car parts as well as common items like shoe soles. The resulting high from the chemicals released is said to last for 10 to 12 hours.
There are a number of health risks associated with using flavoured condoms as an intoxicant. According to reports from Vice News, drinking the water from the soaked condoms can not only cause an addictive high but can also negatively impact the lungs and kidneys, harm the body’s nervous system, and long-term use of the substance can lead to mental abnormalities, unconsciousness, and in certain cases even death.
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