Where to buy smelling salts
The use of smelling salts, or ammonium carbonate inhalants, goes back centuries, and they’re still sold in the same form. They work by irritating the membranes in the nose and lungs and triggering a near-involuntary inhalation reflex. This inhalation increases oxygen levels in the body and helps people regain consciousness. Some athletes swear by smelling salts to help them wake up after a hard workout or a long day in the office and to boost their performance.
While smelling salts have fallen out of favor in medical circles, they’re still available for purchase. They’re not regulated by the FDA, so makers can make big claims without any scientific backing.
Many smelling salts are sold in packets or bottles, and they contain a hefty dose of ammonia. This chemical is traditionally used in items like fertilizer, but smelling salts have found new devotees among some athletes and fitness enthusiasts. These products are marketed as a way to increase alertness, boost energy, and improve focus, but their effect is short-lived and can cause other side effects.
The most common side effects of smelling salts include eye, nose, and throat irritation. They can also make you cough, and repeated overuse can lead to breathing problems and irreversible lung damage. Moreover, smelling salts can mask a head injury or cover worsening symptoms, and they can exacerbate an already-present concussion.