Medically reviewed by Deborah Weatherspoon, Ph.D., R.N., CRNA — written by Adrienne Santos-Longhurst top top February 3, 2020

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You inhale helium indigenous a balloon, and virtually as if through magic, friend sound favor a cartoon chipmunk. Hilarrrious.

Harmless as it might seem, though, inhaling helium can be danger — deadly, in fact. There are numerous situation reports of significant injury and even fatality caused by helium inhalation.


When girlfriend inhale helium, it displaces oxygen. This means that as you inhale, your body is only gaining helium.

Oxygen theatre a duty in every function of your body. Anytime you don’t get sufficient of it, you’re putting yourself at risk. Plenty of of the threats are the same just like other inhalants.

You are watching: How much helium can you inhale


Typically, inhaling a single breath that helium from a balloon will have actually the desired, voice-altering effect. It might likewise cause a little bit of dizziness.

That said, there’s constantly the potential for other effects, including:

Inhaling helium native a balloon isn’t likely to cause significant health concerns or death you, however it’s no impossible. There have been news reports of part folks, particularly young children, dying from asphyxiation ~ inhaling helium from a balloon.


The majority of serious health and wellness issues and deaths pertained to helium inhalation involve inhaling helium native a pressurized tank. These room the very same tanks supplied to to fill helium balloons at occasions or party it is provided stores.

Tanks not only organize a lot more helium than your day-to-day party balloon, however they also release the helium through much more force.

The more pure helium friend inhale, the longer your human body is without an essential oxygen. Breath in pure helium can cause death through asphyxiation in just minutes.

Inhaling helium from a pressurized tank can likewise cause a gas or air embolism, i m sorry is a bubble that becomes trapped in a blood vessel, blocking it. The blood vessels deserve to rupture and also hemorrhage.

Finally, the helium can also enter your lungs with sufficient force to cause your lung to rupture.


I simply inhaled some — am ns in danger?

If did you do it inhaled a bit of helium native a balloon and also are just feeling a tiny fuzzy or dizzy, or have actually a gentle headache, you’re more than likely fine. Have a seat, breath normally, and wait the out.

If your symptoms are an ext severe or if you’ve shed consciousness, have actually someone take it you to the nearest emergency room — much better safe 보다 sorry.

If you’ve huffed helium native a pressurized container, your symptoms might be a bit more severe. Again, if you feel fine various other than a little bit of dizziness, you more than likely don’t have anything to concern about.

Watch because that symptoms that could be a authorize of much more serious problems in the coming minutes and hours.

If friend or someone rather experiences any of the complying with after inhaling helium, call 911 appropriate away:


So, walk this median I have the right to never acquire that high-pitched voice again?

Not necessarily, yet it’s crucial to remember that doing so isn’t without risk. The said, you should absolutely avoid huge balloons and also pressurized tanks.

You should additionally steer clear of every helium if you have a lung or love condition.

Stick with little party balloons if you must and follow these tips:

Do that sitting down in case you get lightheaded or pass the end to mitigate your hazard of injury.Make certain someone rather is through you who can help if symptoms do occur.Don’t let kids inhale from balloons. Not only are they much more susceptible to having a bad reaction, but they’re also an ext prone to inhaling parts of the balloon or choking.
The bottom line

A one-off breath the helium from a little balloon for a laugh is unlikely to be catastrophic, but it can cause dizziness and make you pass out.

Have a seat so you nothing have much to fall and also avoid channeling your inner munchkin by inhaling indigenous a helium tank or huge balloon.

See more: How To Block Spoofed Calls On Iphone Spoofed Calls / Neighbor Scam

Even a couple of seconds without oxygen can have severe effects.


Adrienne Santos-Longhurst is a freelance writer and author who has actually written extensively on all points health and also lifestyle for more than a decade. As soon as she’s no holed up in her writing burned researching an article or off interviewing wellness professionals, she can be discovered frolicking roughly her coast town v husband and dogs in tow, or splashing around the lake do the efforts to master the stand-up paddleboard.


last medically the review on February 3, 2020


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Medically reviewed by Deborah Weatherspoon, Ph.D., R.N., CRNA — created by Adrienne Santos-Longhurst top top February 3, 2020

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