You would think ingesting faeces and urines is nauseating enough but not until you hear that some teens in Indonesia were drinking the juices extracted from used sanitary pads just to get high.
According to The Jakarta Post, these young Indonesian teens found an affordable way to get intoxicated without the use of actual drugs and some of them had been detained by the police, said National Narcotics Agency Central Java chapter head Senior Commander Suprinarto.
When explaining how the teens produced the recreational ‘drug’, Suprinarto said the teens took the used pads from the trash and put them in boiling water. Once it cooled down, they drank it to get high. Keywords: used pads from the trash. Eww!
He said it was the chlorine in the boiled mixture that was responsible for creating the feeling of “flying” and hallucinations, a similar sensation found when taking certain drugs.
The police had arrested the teens from Jakarta, West Java, and Central Java. Business Insider reported Suprinarto saying that these teens came from poorer neighbourhood and couldn’t afford drugs like methamphetamine, which costs millions of rupiah per gram.
An advocate for safe drinking, Jimy Ginting, said that this wasn’t the first recorded case where sanitary pads drinks were used for recreational purposes.
In 2016, groups of teenagers in Belitung, Bangka Belitung Islands, and Karawang, West Java, did the same.
“I don’t know who started it all, but I knew it started around two years ago. There is no law against it so far. There is no law against these kids using a mixture of mosquito repellent and (cold syrup) to get drunk,” Ginting told The Jakarta Post last Saturday (Nov 11).
Tempo.co reported this phenomenon had since grown in 2017. A chemical researcher at Bandung’s Institute of Technology, Yessi Permana, explained that products such as sanitary pads, diapers and sweat absorbers, all contain a chemical that will cause irritation to the eyes, called superabsorbent polymers (SAP). Sodium polyacrylate is one type of polymer often found in these products.
“As listed on the material safety data sheet (MSDS), that content irritates the eye because it has absorbent qualities. It should be prevented from entering the body,” Yessi elaborated.
Dr Hari Nugroho from the Institute of Mental Health Addiction And Neurosience added that drinking it in large quantities would cause damage in the kidneys and liver, among others, and may even lead to the developing of cancer cells.