Dangerous Trends: Trippy Sticks, and Teens Smoking Alcohol
Following closely on the heels of my post on e-cigarettes, here’s some news about another way some pseudo cigarettes are being used — as a way to get high.
MBRC counselor Craig Sadler says, “It’s hard for the treatment profession to keep up with emerging drug-using technology. ‘Trippy Sticks’ and other E-Cig products [are being used] for marijuana, hash, and so forth. Some are designed to look like ink pens.”
If at times Sadler feels overwhelmed about staying up to date on the current trends in drug use — or technology for drug use, what are parents (and others, besides Sadler, in the addiction and recovery community) to do? Here’s the press release on trippy sticks, courtesy of Sadler (and at the risk of sounding promotional, it’s with the help of dedicated counselors like him who do stay on top of the field that people recover).
The release describes these e-cigarettes as portable Hash oil vaporizers – privacy pens that camouflage what they’re being used for. (No odor, right?) And if the publicist is to be believed, they’re taking Denver, Los Angeles, Seattle, San Diego, Newark, NYC, Boston, Miami, and Phoenix by storm. They’re also supposed to be healthier because they don’t burn “THC-Concentrated ‘OG’ Hash oil.” I’d give you the website URL, but I don’t want to help promote them. Rappers are doing that, in several songs.
The marketer says that they’ll become even more popular as more medical marijuana is approved in more states. I’ve said before that medical marijuana definitely has a place in many cases, but it’s an area rife for abuse, too. I once spoke to an addiction specialist who knew a man whose knees hurt terribly every time he skied. It was enough to get him a prescription for medical marijuana.
Here’s the Urban Dictionary listing for trippy sticks: www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=trippy%20stick
This post may seem like something right out of fiction to some people. In fact, it almost does to me, and I’m writing it.
Teens Smoking Alcohol
Another dangerous “vaping” trend involves kids inhaling alcohol, according to the Today show. They can find out about it in YouTube videos, like the one where a kid pours some liquor into a plastic bottle, pumps air into the bottle, and sucks out the fumes. When kids hear the myth that they can lose weight this way, it just sounds ideal, right?
Doctors are warning the public about it because it sends pure alcohol into a person’s brain – extremely dangerous. There’s another myth circulating that since you’re not actually drinking, you’re not doing anything illegal, like underage drinking. And here’s another problem, according to the writeup on the website:
If a kid ends up in the ER, testing will turn up alcohol poisoning, but not whether he or she drank it or inhaled it (so no one knows how many kids are doing this). But at least ER doctors are aware and know to look for the practice.
And about my earlier question, what are parents to do? As experts tell you, educate yourself. Spend the time to stay up on the latest trends among kids, and talk to your kids about what you find. The Partnership at Drugfree.org is a great resource. They’ll suggest how to talk to your kids about these topics, for example.