Parents be wary – a new drug craze is on the rise.
A cough mixture containing codeine, that the users call ‘syrup’ is apparently famous amongst young high school children who mix it with fizzy drinks in squeeze bottles to disguise it, Sedibeng Ster reports .
The “syrup” apparently causes them to experience some kind of a “high”, almost the same as that of nyaope. They buy these medicines from pharmacies.
Codeine is an opioid pain medication (narcotic) used to treat mild to moderate pain.
Although one does not need a prescription for schedule 1 and 2 medicines, you can only buy them from a pharmacy and they must be given to you by a pharmacist. Pharmacists are required by law to write down your name and the name and quantity of the medicine whenever you buy a schedule 1 or 2 medicine. Medicines that include Codeine are classified as schedule 2 medicines. Schedule 2 medicines are not to be sold to anyone under the age of 14, and they are only to be sold under personal supervision of a pharmacist.
Speaking to Sedibeng Ster, a source said: “Parents are probably thinking that their children are drinking juice in the bottles but they are actually drugging themselves and the effects are much worse as the ‘drink’ leaves them like ‘zombies’. Some of the children are apparently selling “syrup” at school to those that do not have access to it.”
Vicki St Quintin from Adcock Ingram, one of the companies that produce medicine containing codeine, said: “Adcock Ingram is fully supportive of the responsible use of the medicines we manufacture and market, and especially those containing codeine. We also fully support the recent scheduling changes published by the Medicines Control Council (MCC) to regulate the availability of codeine-containing products to patients, in order to mitigate their misuse or abuse. We have worked speedily to comply with these regulatory changes.
“We would most certainly encourage anyone with information regarding misuse of any of our products to contact us at one of the following: firstname.lastname@example.org, or 0860 ADCOCK (232625), or email@example.com, or 0800 212 762.”
– Caxton News Service