Teens abuse over-the-counter cold medicines because these products can get them high and because access is easy. Triple C abuse is a term that refers to abuse of any cold medicine, and teens will abuse them because they can walk into any drug store and make a purchase. The real danger in this practice is that most teens assume taking more than the recommended dose of a medicine that is so easy to get, and isn’t off the street couldn’t possibly cause them harm. It’s readily available and their parents give it to them when they’re sick, so it’s safe, right? This false assumption can lead to serious consequences.
What Is Triple C?
Triple C is a slang term for any cold medicine with the active ingredient dextromethorphan, or DXM. The name comes from the brand name Coricidin Cough and Cold, but there are many over-the-counter cold medicines that contain DXM. DXM is the active ingredient that makes a cold medicine useful when you’re feeling under the weather, but it is also the ingredient that teens are after for a high. Taking an amount that is double, triple or even quadruple the recommended dose will give you a lightheaded, euphoric feeling, and this is what teens want when they abuse Triple C.
What Are The Side Effects Of Triple C?
Abusing any cold medicine with DXM can cause side effects that range from unpleasant to dangerous. The side effects are minimal to non-existent if you are simply taking the drug to offset your cold symptoms. But when a teen takes much more than the usual dosage, she increases the odds of experiencing side effects, and the intensity of those side effects increases as well. Possible side effects are nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, an irregular heartbeat, headaches, numbness and tingling in the limbs and dangerously elevated blood pressure. In the worst case scenario, your teen may even have seizures from taking Triple C. She could even end up with brain damage and could die.
How You Can Protect Your Teen From Triple C
By becoming more aware and educated about the fact that teens abuse cough medicine, you are already taking a step to protect your child. Most parents are blissfully ignorant of the risky and unbelievable things some teens will do to get high. And, don’t make the mistake of assuming your child would never do this. Even straight-A students and star athletes are susceptible to bad choices.
Now that you know the problem exists and what Triple C’s high side effects are, you can talk to your teen about it. It may not always seem like it, but you are still the most influential person in your teen’s life. Statistics show that teens whose parents talk to them about drug abuse are less likely to do it. Sit your teen down and talk about cough medicine abuse. It could make all the difference.
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