Why Poppers are Banned?


Poppers is the term given for a few chemical drugs that are inhaled for recreational use and for its ability to heighten the sexual experience. When they first entered the market, they were used for therapeutic applications and in heart medications.Why poppers are banned?

When they were introduced initially, they came enclosed in a glass mesh which had to be crushed between one’s fingers before they had to be consumed. This made a popping sound and thus the name “Poppers” came into being.

Although poppers are used by people of all genders and sexual orientations, they are more popular amongst the gay community. The main reason for this is that these drugs help in relaxing the anal sphincter muscles and make anal sex far less painful. It also heightens the sexual experience and provides intense orgasms. 

Why Poppers are Banned?

When used responsibly and in limited quantities, poppers aren’t dangerous per se but abusing them can lead to severe consequences. Here are some of the reasons why they have banned in some countries.

1)   Health Consequences – They can increase your blood pressure and lead to strokes and heart attacks if consumed in large quantities. Studies have also shown that even casual use can lead to permanent damage to your eyes and your immune system over time. Canada and Japan have banned the sale of poppers due to the potential health risks involved.

2)   Risk of Addiction – As they provide intense highs and heightens one’s sexual experience, it’s not impossible to believe that some might become addicted to them. Moreover, there is always the risk of it becoming a gateway drug and lead to individuals trying out more dangerous drugs. This fear led to poppers being potentially banned in the U.S a few decades ago. 

3)   Dangerous Variants – Poppers are an umbrella term used to define a series of psychoactive drugs but not all of them pose the same health risks. Butyl Nitrite, for instance, is a very dangerous variant of poppers and has been banned in countries such as France.

4)   Improper Use – While poppers aren’t harmful when inhaled, swallowing them can be very dangerous. Education and awareness can help in this regard, but the intense high it provides may not create an ideal state of mind for the individual to make an informed choice for consumption.

5)   Negative View on Drugs – Most of the countries tend to have a more conservative view on drugs as there is a lot of potential for abuse. The fear of abuse prompted countries to initially ban poppers but some of them did turn around and unban them later. In Australia, poppers were banned initially but after a series of protests and requests, they became legal. 

State of Poppers in the UK

Poppers have gone through numerous ups and downs in the U.K. In 2016, the Parliament tried to pass a blanket ban of several drugs that included poppers. However, due to heavy protests, they were removed from the ban and are now legal for consumption. 

The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs stated that they cannot be classified under the Psychoactive Substances Act as they don’t directly affect the central nervous system. Therefore, poppers UK suppliers exist as they can be legally sold in the U.K, but they cannot be advertised for human consumption.


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