Something as innocuous as gummy bears are now being used by unscrupulous people to entice American teenagers and entrap them into the world of drugs and crime. 11 teens in La Porte County, Indiana, recently fell sick after consuming drug-laced candies. Six young boys and five girls were rushed to the hospital after they reported symptoms of blurry vision, rapid heartbeat and pain in legs; some even suffered hallucinations. The gummy bears were laced with THC, the main constituent in marijuana, and are suspected to have come from states where marijuana is legalized. The state’s law enforcement officials have managed to track down the person responsible for targeting innocent teens.
The officials reported that each person consumed half the gummy before falling sick. They responded to the 911 call by an anxious 19-year-old teenager, who asked for emergency services. When the officials rushed to the spot, they found 10 of his friends complaining of pain. Highlighting the adverse impact of the mind-altering substance THC, one of the police officers on duty, Captain Kellums, said, “The strength is so strong that it caused an adverse reaction in 11 people. Not one person. Not three. It wasn’t just a small batch or a bad batch.”
The incident brings to light the plight of law enforcement personnel, who despite making efforts to curb drug-related crime in the state, are pitted against the ploys of drug dealers every now and then. Since teens are curious and vulnerable, they become easy prey for dealers.
Eating gummy bears may not be fun-filled any more
This is not the first incident of drug manufacturers lacing candies like “SweeTARTS” or “Smarties.” The number of children and teenagers becoming victims of the illicit drug trade is on the rise. This is a serious threat to their lives necessitating the need to raise awareness and become more vigilant.
It is becoming increasingly difficult for state officials to track goods made in other states. Manufacture of products is subject to the laws of the state in which they are made. In addition, the legal practices of some states allowing the use of certain kinds of drugs or mixing of drugs with edible food items prevents law enforcement officials from issuing the necessary directives against vendors selling such products. Currently, the biggest challenge for the officials is to stop the way in which drug-laced treats such as gummy bears find their way into the hands of children.
While many teenagers may believe that getting stoned is a part of growing up, it is necessary to remember that consuming drugs even for fun can trigger lifelong addiction habits. Someone unknowingly experiencing a drug for the first time may be exposed to severe consequences that may result in instant death. The gummies may even be laced with other dangerous drugs like Xanax, heroin or meth. Officials around the country have also come across cases of prescription medicines injected into the gummies or dipped in the drugs and mixed with candies.
Recurring incidents such as these have now made it imperative to warn parents about the trend of drug-laced candies and the extent of harm they may cause to their children. These candies look like normal ones and hence, the unsuspecting teenagers have no way of knowing their effects until after consumption.
Taking the first step toward recovery
Drug abuse has become a nationwide concern. Delaying treatment will only worsen the mental and physical state of those suffering and their families. The need of the hour is to impose stricter laws against the flourishing drug trade, and more prevention and awareness programs to keep the citizens safe.
The Sovereign Health of Rancho San Diego provides comprehensive and holistic treatment for teens suffering from addiction-related problems. If you come across instances of any kind of drug abuse among teens in your family or your loved ones, call our 24/7 helpline number or chat with our online representatives for expert advice about drug rehab centers for teens. Teen drug abuse is a serious concern that must be treated in time to enjoy a healthier and happier life.