Primary Mental Disorders
Inhalant-Induced Disorders may be characterized by symptoms (e.g., depressed mood) that resemble primary mental disorders (e.g., Major Depressive Disorder versus Inhalant-Induced Mood Disorder, With Depressive Features, With Onset During Intoxication.
The symptoms of mild to moderate Inhalant Intoxication can be similar to those of Alcohol Intoxication and Sedative, Hypnotic, or Anxiolytic Intoxication. Breath odor or residues on body or clothing may be important differentiating clues, but should not be relied on exclusively. Individuals who chronically use inhalants are likely to use other substances frequently and heavily, further complicating the diagnostic picture. Concomitant use of alcohol may also make the differentiation difficult. History of the drug used and characteristic findings (including odor of solvent or paint residue) may differentiate Inhalant Intoxication from other substance intoxications; additionally, symptoms may subside faster with Inhalant Intoxication than with other substance intoxications. Rapid onset and resolution may also differentiate Inhalant Intoxication from other mental disorders and neurological conditions. Inhalant Intoxication is distinguished from the other Inhalant-Induced Disorders (e.g., Inhalant-Induced Mood Disorder, With Onset During Intoxication) because the symptoms in these latter disorders are in excess of those usually associated with Inhalant Intoxication and are severe enough to warrant independent clinical attention.
Accidental exposure to volatile chemicals
Industrial workers may occasionally be accidentally exposed to volatile chemicals and suffer physiological intoxication. The category "Other Substance-Related Disorders" should be used for such toxin exposures.