Adults may know teen parties for loud music, dancing, and playing games. An element that they may not be aware of is having a pharm party where teens take a mix of prescription drugs from a bowl. It is important that parents are aware of these kinds of parties to prevent their kids from making a deadly mistake.
Pharm parties involve dumping prescription drugs and over the counter medications in a party bowl for everyone to take a handful of. At this party, there is a lot of experimenting to see if a certain combination of drugs which achieve a certain affect. Sometimes, you might not even know what pills you are taking as they are all mixed up. You can achieve a mild buzz to a full on high or a fatal reaction. Teens are able to get them as they raid their parent’s medicine cabinet. By “pharming,” you are taking two or three pills from different containers. The prized pills are normally OxyContin, Vicodin, Adderall, or Ritalin. Teens will be surprised to see what happens using different combinations.
Teens may think that since these prescription drugs are legal, it means that they are safe to take. The truth is quite the contrary as mixing drugs that you do not know the effects of can result in a visit to the emergency room or death. If you are allergic to a certain medication and it is in the cocktail, deadly results can occur especially when mixed with alcohol. A teen can also develop an addiction as a result of this one party. A teen’s judgment and impulsiveness begins developing around this time until they are in their 20s. If they become used to the drugs that they are having at this party, their bodies will begin to crave more and more of them.
Because teens do not want their parents to know that they are having pharm parties, they will use a certain lingo when talking with their friends. A recipe is a combination of drugs. Trail mix are bowls and baggies of random pills. A punch bowl party are different medications mixed in one bowl with random combinations. If you mix antidepressants with painkillers, you can get an overload of serotonin, high temperature, and fast heart rate. A mix of painkillers and anti-anxiety medications leads to lowered heart and breathing rate. Painkillers, anti-anxiety medications, and muscle relaxers together bring about rapid heart and breathing rates.
Teens may want to indulge in these parties because of all of the pressure they may get. If you do not join in on the “fun” activities the party plans, you will look like the odd one out. When you are a teenager, the most important thing to them is fitting in and being the life of the party for everyone. They are trying to find their identity and are willing to go further than anyone else in their quest to finding themselves. To prevent going through the trouble of spending a lot of money on a dealer, teens will use what is available to them to get high. This can mean finding over the counter medications that contain ingredients that achieve the same effect as illicit drugs or drinking several caffeinated beverages like Red Bull.
The reason that teens are able to get access to these medications is the leftover pills their parents have. It is possible that someone in their house may have a condition that lasts two to four weeks. Once they feel better, they still have leftover pills. Because pills cost money, their parents may not want to throw them away. If they throw them in the trash, it is possible that someone can dig in the trash and take them. If they flush the pills down the toilet, it could be bad for the environment. In order to prevent your children from holding a pharm party, any used medications should be left at drop-off locations. You can ask your local pharmacist of any places they recommend in your area. If you have any medications that are expired, get rid of them as exposure to heat and air can change their chemical makeup.
Make sure to keep all of your medications in one place so that you know where they are and can keep track of them. Put them in a locked compartment or somewhere your children cannot find it. Do not tell your children where you keep the medication and that if they need medicine, you will personally give them the right dose. Friends, family, or people you hire that you bring into your house can find your medication and take it when you are not looking so it is important that you do not let anyone know what kind of medications you have and where you put them. Most importantly, it is important that you teach your children about the dangers of prescription drugs. That just because a drug is legal to take does not mean that it is safe. Show them the instructions and warnings that are on the medication bottles. Talk to them about the use of these medications and what should be done if the medications are not used. Tell your children to go with their conscience if they have a feeling that participating in these pharm parties are wrong. Let them know that their lives are too important to ruin over one party.
Located in Tacoma, Washington, Bayview Center’s mission is to offer clinically-driven programs and services to treat a number of substance abuse disorders along with anxiety and depression using cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, trauma therapy, yoga therapy, and more for a successful recovery. For more information, please call us 888 570 7154 at as we are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.