Tick Tock on American Teens –
Sep. 15, 2020 – In Summer 2020, the so-named “Benadryl Challenge” dared social media users — generally teenagers — to overdose on the common allergy medication Benadryl to elicit a hallucinatory effect, record a video of the user’s reaction, and share the video on the social media platform TikTok.
In an email to Snopes, a TikTok spokesperson confirmed that the platform had first learned of the challenge in May 2020, at which point its moderators removed the “very small” amount of content that was found at the time. In the months following, an unknown number of teenagers across the U.S. continued to participate in the digital dare, which is allegedly connected to the death of at least one teen and the hospitalization of three others, prompting warnings from health experts about the potential risk of overdose death. These warnings in turn prompted coverage by mainstream news media, which described teens’ participation in the challenge — perhaps hyperbolically — as a “trend”: