13-Year-Old Dead After Participating in Viral Benadryl TikTok Challenge
Jacob Stevens, 13, died after consuming 12 to 15 antihistamine pills while participating in a dangerous TikTok challenge.
The Ohio teen overdosed on over-the-counter medication while participating in the viral Benadryl challenge, in which people consume a large amount of Benadryl or other antihistamine medication in order to potentially achieve a hallucinatory state. The challenge rose to popularity on TikTok in 2020.
Jacob's father, Justin, told ABC 6 that his son was home with friends tragedy struck.
The teen's friends were filming Jacob take the pills for a TikTok video when Jacob's body suddenly went into shock.
Jacob was rushed to the hospital and placed on a ventilator. He died six days later.
"It was too much for his body," Justin told ABC 6. "No brain scan, there was nothing there. They said we could keep him on the vent, that he could lay there — but he will never open his eyes, he’ll never breathe, smile, walk or talk."
Justin described his late son as a smart, funny, bright child. "It didn’t matter how bad of a day I was having, [if] no one could make me smile, Jacob could make me smile," he said.
The grieving father is now urging parents to keep a close eye on what their children are doing on social media.
"Talk to them about the situation. I want everyone to know about my son," he told ABC 6.
Justin is also demanding lawmakers put age restrictions on purchasing over-the-counter medications such as Benadryl.