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Challenge of Tarrant County warns parents about teens buying fake pills on social media

The group is hoping to stop a rise in overdoses in the county.

KELLER, Texas — The number of overdose calls among teenagers is on the rise across Northeast Tarrant County, according to Challenge of Tarrant County, a community coalition dedicated to preventing and treating addiction in the area. What many parents may not be aware of is that teens are buying drugs through social media. Challenge has been reaching out to parents with a message.

The group recently sent out a PSA reminder for parents on social media about keeping an eye on their teenagers.

“It only takes a little to lose a lot. Pills purchased through social media aren’t what you think,” one person says in part of the message in the video.

Challenge is warning parents, as many are getting ready to head back to school next week, to monitor their kids' social media accounts.

“You may think you’re getting Percocet or Xanax, but you can’t know,” another part of the video says.

Kierra Woods is the program director of the community coalition.

For example, the drug dealers are posting pictures of pills on their lock feature, where they can create a story, which is a post that will disappear after a set amount of time.

“The products are there. It tells you what they are, and what effects they give you, and what you have to do to get it,” Woods said.

The pills are generally counterfeit and laced with fentanyl, a synthetic opioid that’s 100 times more potent than morphine.

“Just two milligrams can kill a person. It only takes a little to lose a lot,” one person says about the harmful drug in the video.

Woods says well over 110 teens have overdosed across Tarrant County this year alone.

Education is key.

“You go where they’re already at. You interact with parents, and students in their own natural elements,” Woods said.

Another way they’re getting the message across is on billboards across the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

“If you think someone is experiencing an overdose, call 911. You can save their life,” the PSA concludes.

If you want more information about how you or your child can get help, you can call Challenge of Tarrant County at 817-336-6617.