Monday, May 9, 2022

Who is Brooke Ryan? 16-year-old girl found dead in bedroom with deodorant can in hand

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According to her mother, Anne Ryan, Brooke Ryan had sniffed aerosols

Brooke Ryan, 16, was found dead in her bedroom three months ago, on February 3, holding a spray can of deodorant by her mother Anne Ryan. According to public health experts, inhalant abuse is a worrying trend among adolescents and teenagers.

The Sydney Morning Herald reported that Brooke, a prolific athlete and brilliant student, appeared to have sniffed aerosols. It was mid-afternoon on Thursday 3 February when Brooke, who wore her L license plate, had been practicing driving with her mother all morning. Brooke planned a weekend trip to Mildura before beginning her 11th grade studies the following week.


Anne said: “I wake up, I think of her, I go to sleep and think of her, and you wish, you wish [you could bring her back], but you just can’t. Every day is a nightmare.” Brooke is survived by her mother Anne, her father Deon, who works as a sewage works manager, three older brothers, her boyfriend and a large circle of acquaintances. She wanted to be a lawyer, physiotherapist or beautician and planned to study Advanced English.

Brooke even struggled with anxiety, especially during the pandemic, but she had plenty of help and was determined to overcome it. “She was a beautiful girl with a heart of gold who is sorely missed and would be absolutely devastated to know the negative impact her death had on so many people,” Anne added.

The coroner’s report is pending, but Anne believes this is due to sudden death in sniff, a documented side effect of inhalant use. Brooke’s body was injured, suggesting she had suffered a heart attack. Anne had no idea her daughter was taking inhalants and is sharing her experience to warn other parents of the risks. A clinical toxicologist at the NSW Poisons Information Centre, Dr. Ingrid Berling, has uncovered worrying evidence of an increase in inhalant use among adolescents.

Between 2017 and 2020, inquiries to the NSW Poisons Information Center about inhalant use nearly doubled, according to Berling. The most serious side effect of inhalants, according to the toxicologist, is sudden death syndrome in sniff, from which Brooke died. Although this rarely happens, it can happen to anyone at any time, regardless of their usage frequency. Decreased consciousness, convulsions, nausea and vomiting are possible side effects. Consistent use can damage the brain.

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