Serious Adverse Drug Events associated with the “Benadryl Challenge”

Written by The Bee News

September 29, 2020

Serious Adverse Drug Events associated with the “Benadryl Challenge”

 The Mohave Area Partnership Promoting Educated Decisions (MAPPED) coalition would like to share information provided by the FDA regarding the Serious Adverse Drug Events associated with the “Benadryl Challenge”. The FDA has issued a Drug Safety Communication to alert citizens and clinicians about recent reports of teenagers taking higher than recommended doses of diphenhydramine (Benadryl®) in response to a video challenge that appeared on the social medial platform called TikTok. TikTok is a website and phone application that enables users to share short videos on any topic.

A series of videos called the “Benadryl Challenge” were recently posted on TikTok and encouraged viewers to take 10-20 doses of diphenhydramine to get high and hallucinate. Taking higher than recommended doses of diphenhydramine can result in serious heart problems, seizures, coma and death.
The FDA encourages consumers, parents and caregivers to store diphenhydramine and other medications out of reach and sight or to lock up medications to prevent misuse or accidental poisonings.  Free lockboxes can be obtained at the Mohave County Department of Public Health, 1222 Hancock Road during regular business hours, Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Please read and follow the Drug Facts label. In the event of suspected overdose, health care professionals should attempt to determine whether a patient took diphenhydramine.  The complete Drug Safety Communication can be viewed on the https://www.fda.gov/drugs/drug-safety-and-availability/fda-warns-about-serious-problems-high-doses-allergy-medicine-diphenhydramine-benadry website.

Many abused prescription drugs are obtained from family or friends and often from the home medicine cabinet. By disposing unwanted prescription drugs, you can help reduce the access to addictive or harmful medications for accidental or intentional misuse. Plus, it provides an environmentally safe alternative to disposing medications in landfills and sewer systems.

A prescription drop-off slot is located on the counter in the Bullhead City Police Department lobby, 1255 Marina Boulevard. The drop-off can be accessed during regular business hours, Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Citizens may place their unused medications/drugs into the collection box anonymously. All pills must be placed in a zip loc baggie, which will be provided at the counter free of charge.  Medication in a blister pack may be left in the original packaging. Please remove or black out personal information on prescription bottles before putting them in the trash, once they’ve been emptied.

MAPPED wants to invite anyone interested in making a difference in the community to attend its monthly meetings via Zoom usually held the 1st Thursday each month at 9 a.m.  MAPPED’s mission as a coalition is to empower the community in healthy decision that impact substance abuse and other destructive behaviors.  MAPPED hosts annual events and would value your participation and/or support.  If you have questions regarding MAPPED please contact MAPPED’s Director Karole Finkelstein at (928)219-2582 or Lorrie Duggins at (928)715-0222, via email: [email protected]

Everyone is welcome to join the coalition!

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