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Sober Nation

Putting Recovery On The Map

01-10-19 | By

Teens in Indonesia Are Using Menstrual Pads to Get High

Well, this wasn’t something we were expecting. And no, it isn’t a joke.

Tide pods, bug spray, now menstrual pads. There’s been no shortage of creative and dangerous ways to get high, and this won’t be last of weird and disturbing things we hear of people using to get high.

Just this week, the Central Java branch of the National Drug Agency (BNN) in Indonesia broke the news of the fad during an interview with the newspaper Jawa Pos.

This is Disturbing

This is seriously disturbing and actually very sad.

The teens live on the streets in cities in Indonesia such as Purwodadi and Kudus which are impoverished areas, and most of the kids are aged 13 to 16. They’ve been taking menstrual pads – some used, some brand new – and boiling them in water, distilling the chemicals and “gels” inside. They then drink the water and feel high.

According to the BNN, drinking the bizarre formula gives the user a feeling of flying and hallucinations, and one teen who admitted drinking the concoction, “morning, afternoon, and evening,” described the liquid as “bitter,” mostly thanks to the chlorine in the product.

“The materials they’re using are legal, but they’re not being used in a way that’s intended, so it ends up being like a drug,” explained Suprinatro, a commissioner of BNN. “We need to take steps to educate people that there are materials that aren’t classified as drugs or psychotropics in the eyes of the law, but can still be misused.”

Trends on The Rise

However, apparently, this way of getting high has been going on for years. For Indonesian street kids, sniffing glue was the drug of choice. And more recently, they’ve moved to other creative ways to get messed up on things that we most not think twice about.

Sitty Hikmawatty, a commissioner for drugs and health with the Indonesian Committee on Child Protection (KPAI), told the press that these trends have already been on the rise in recent years.
“A lot of these kids are smart, and with the internet they can make new variants and concoctions,” she noted. “This is where the risk factor goes up because they’re only concerned with one substance in a mixture, ignoring the other substances, leaving open the possibility of fatal side effects.”

Stricter Drug Laws

But why exactly are these kids turning to pads? Most Indonesian consumers don’t buy tampons due to beliefs that women who use them are no longer “virgins.” More than a billion pads are thrown away each month.
The Indonesian Ministry of Health said that it will investigate what, exactly, is in the menstrual pads that is making the kids feel under the influence.
Indonesia also has some of the strictest laws in the world when it comes to illicit drugs. The death penalty is often applied to drug traffickers, drug dealers, and in some cases, drug users – hence why some kids find ways to bypass the law to get high.

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