Clinicians warn of Benadryl overdoses linked to viral TikTok challenge

Clinicians are warning about a viral social media challenge on TikTok that encourages people to take excess doses of Benadryl to get high or hallucinate.

In late August, a 15-year-old Oklahoma girl reportedly died of a Benadryl overdose after attempting the challenge, according to Oklahoma City's local station KFOR-TV. 

Cook Children's Health Care System in Fort Worth, Texas, also sounded the alarm about the "Benadryl challenge" after treating three teenagers who overdosed on the over-the-counter allergy medication in May. 

"What struck me was that we had three teens come in for the same thing in one week," Amber Jewison, a hospitalist nurse practitioner at Cook Children's, said in a news release. "None of these patients were trying to harm themselves. They all said they saw videos on TikTok and were curious to try it."

Taking too much Benadryl can cause an elevated heart rate, arrhythmias, hallucinations and seizures, among other dangerous side effects, Ms. Jewison said.

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