More threads by David Baxter PhD

David Baxter PhD

Late Founder
New "Cheese Heroin" Threatens Youths
Wednesday, June 13, 2007

School counselors have long decried marijuana as a "gateway drug," but the effects of a new drug that has been cropping up in Texes schools may have even more frightening ramifications on future drug use. In 2005, Dallas police started to encounter an innocuous gummy substance wrapped in notebook paper and nicknamed "cheese heroin." While it may have a funny name, cheese heroin is far from a joke to those who have encountered it. Cheese is a mix of derivatives from over-the-counter medicines like Tylenol PM and adulterated heroin, two sedatives that can combine to stop the heart.

While the heroin in this new drug mixture is diluted, it still ranges as high as 8%, which is enough to engender a physical addiction with withdrawal symptoms beginning as early as 12 hours after last use. This is particularly troubling because cheese is being peddled to young children, who can buy a hit--for as little as $2--with the money they were given to buy a kit-kat bar. Younger persons who might have stayed away from straight heroin because of its dangerous image may get hooked because they don't realize exactly what cheese contains. Detective Monty Moncibais publicly stated that in the span of only a few months there were 71 arrests of children between 10 and 16 years old. Many of these children can be detoxified and rehabilitated, but there have been deaths as well. The DEA's Microgram Bulletin states that cheese deaths are particularly hard to prove because of the chemical interference between acetaminophen and diphenhydramine hydrochloride, but careful analysis can yield reliable results. The Dallas Morning News, spurred by rising community fears over the toll of the new drug, scoured through medical examiner records to report that 17 teenagers died from overdoses from 2005 to 2007.

While this crisis has so far been centered in Dallas, parents would be wise to keep their eyes open because drug trends can spread rapidly, as we have seen over the last several years with the spread of methamphetamine. Cheese represents a particularly frightening concoction because of the way that is has been marketed. This is a heroin mixture, and a mentioned above can have strong addictive effects. Beyond simply getting kids to try the drug for the first time, cheese can have younger, inexperienced users seeking out stronger drugs before they realize how bad the situation has become. Communities need to be aware of this new drug mixture so they will be able to stay out front of it, and prevent potentially harmful outcomes to unsuspecting users.


I saw this on the news and its scary stuff. I worry so much about my niece who is 15. She is not into drugs, but I always worry someone will slip something in a soda or something..

I was slipped speed in my wine at a local bar when I was 21, and dont know how I even survived. I was a mess! Anyway, I got lucky that time, and didnt go back for more.
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