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A possible substance addict?

Discussion in 'General Substance Abuse Discussion' started by notodrugs, Jan 23, 2015.

  1. notodrugs

    notodrugs Community Listener Community Listener

    When a child, who has already learned from school about the ill effects of smoking to one's health, burns paper at times because he likes the smell of it, is this indicative of a tendency to smoke or perhaps, fall into addiction someday? Is this something alarming? Aside from explaining fire hazards and him getting hurt, how do you discourage (or do you even have to on the premise of substance abuse) without sounding judgmental and exaggerated?
  2. Gelsemium

    Gelsemium Community Champion

    That is really strange notodrugs. How old is that child? He should be forbid to do that and if he keeps on doing it he should be seen by a doctor...
  3. Shimus

    Shimus Community Champion

    I don't think it'd lend credence to that he was searching a gateway drug or drugs. I believe however that means he has a pyromania vein in his body he just explored. He may end up committing arson crimes rather than drug related ones. Teach him proper use of the fire.
  4. elles-belles

    elles-belles Community Champion

    I am inclined to agree with Shimus in a sense, I don't think this behavior is indicative of a possible drug abuse at all. Children play with weird and dangerous things out of curiosity and it really is up to us as guardians or parents to discourage such behaviors as soon as we catch notice of it! I wouldn't worry about the child possibly getting addicted to some drug.

    This is of course only my opinion!
  5. orangesunset

    orangesunset Active Contributor

    Technically speaking he could get addicted to the smell of burning paper. People can get addicted to things that do not give them a high. So a person can get addicted to inhalers.

    Find out exactly why they are burning the paper. It possibly might be just a phase they are going through.
  6. jeremy2

    jeremy2 Community Champion

    Such kind of behavior should surely raise the red flag.Being a child,you should be concerned as to what exactly triggers that behavior and take the appropriate response.If he at all was into smoking, i would expect him to smoke something but just by smelling the smoke, that could indicate deeper issues.
  7. notodrugs

    notodrugs Community Listener Community Listener

    He's about 10 years old, Gelsemium. That's what the mom did when she caught him doing that. She should really be on guard for the next attempts as I also think it can be something alarming. But what she was concerned about was how she could tell him off without giving a hint that it could be a possible addiction someday. She doesn't want to give him the idea because he might get more curious and try it.
  8. notodrugs

    notodrugs Community Listener Community Listener

    Oh dear! I think that's even scarier as other people' lives and properties will be involved. I'm going to make the mom freak out all the more if I tell her that. She found it easier to explain the dangers of fire but not the possible addiction as she's concerned she might give him the idea to try smoking. But I'll just tell her to teach him the proper use of fire. Thanks Shimus for your advice.
  9. notodrugs

    notodrugs Community Listener Community Listener

    In that case, I'll tell the mom to also research on the proper approach she can give the child and what he could end up doing someday . Thanks elles-belles for your suggestion. The more opinions, the better as I have not even thought of the possibility you and Shimus thought of.
  10. notodrugs

    notodrugs Community Listener Community Listener

    He told his mom that he liked the smell of burnt paper. Poor kid, he does not even know what it could possibly do to him someday. Hopefully though, orangesunset, that it's just really a phase. I remember my cousins, siblings and I were so fascinated with lighted candles that we tried to catch its flame with our fingers. I also found the smell good and soothing. I did smoke but only during social gatherings and I fortunately do not crave for any smell of that sort. Lol! Thanks for your input!

    His mom said he burnt a paper for a school project. That, she believes, triggered the behavior. But his mom is sure that he doesn't smoke. What she thinks is that maybe, he likes the smell so he did it again. But what I wasn't able to ask her was if he's done it several times already or if that was just the first time. Or does it even matter? Thanks jeremy2 for your idea!
  11. musicmonster

    musicmonster Senior Contributor

    You just really have to educate the child on the bad effects of smoking. The school is not enough for that. Most of the time, they need to hear it from their parents. All these education must start at home anyway.
    notodrugs likes this.
  12. calicer1996

    calicer1996 Community Champion

    Now that is some observation! Even I used to burn things and smell them as a child. But I didn't turn out to be an addict. You are over thinking this. Just tell him that it feels good to smoke but in the long run, it destroys you. Abstinence is the better way out.
    notodrugs likes this.
  13. notodrugs

    notodrugs Community Listener Community Listener

    I also did like the smell of burnt candle when I was a kid, in fact until now. But I don't really crave for it or find it addicting. The mom found it alarming that he burnt paper because he liked its smell. I'm not sure but I'm thinking that maybe the child has done it several times already so that might have worried her. Hopefully, as one stated here, it might just be a phase. Thanks for your answer.

    I agree with your musicmonster. Sometimes, when it's discussed in school, the children even talk about it amongst themselves and they get too curious that they end up trying it. Then some find it really good that it can fall into something more serious than just wanting to taste it. I'll tell the mom to have a follow up chat with him. Thanks!
  14. calicer1996

    calicer1996 Community Champion

    Show him some really scary and awful pictures of smokers, enough to scare him real bad (but not traumatize him) so that he never even thinks about smoke!
  15. Charli

    Charli Community Champion

    I've heard of children getting interested in fire at an early age but I've never heard of them do it because of the smell of smoke. I know children at that age develop a lot of quirky habits that don't necessarily carry on to adult life so hopefully this is one of those things. I don't think it would make it gravitate to smoking later on, personally, since they both have different smells, but anything can happen.
  16. Gelsemium

    Gelsemium Community Champion

    Most likely it's just a phase, kids do things without thinking and are not aware of the consequences. As I kid I used to set plane papers on fire and throw them out the window, how dangerous was that?
  17. OhioTom76

    OhioTom76 Senior Contributor

    I think you might be jumping the gun a bit here. Many people like the smell of a wood burning fireplace - that doesn't make them "addicts" at all. Maybe he is equating the smell of burning paper with the smells of burning chimneys, or bonfires, campfires and other more pleasant things.

    My friends and I all played with starting small fires as kids. We would take magnifying glasses and burn holes into paper, just because it looked cool. We would get those red rolls or caps for toy guns and hit the whole thing with a hammer until the entire pack caught fire. I also loved playing with fireworks around 4th of July, lighting off smoke balls and those snake pellets, and sparklers.

    What about getting him one of those electric wood burning kits, so that he can draw on pieces of wood with it? Those give off a very distinct burning smell while you are working with them, plus they are relatively safe and there's no open flames.

    Or maybe a science kit instead, that perhaps has some simple projects that involve heating up certain things to learn more about chemistry.

    Or what if he likes to cook? Maybe get him more involved in the kitchen preparing meals.
  18. Gelsemium

    Gelsemium Community Champion

    Those are good suggestions Tom, we just need to have an alternative occupation so that we don't mess up and our parents or legal guardians are responsible for directing us in the right way.