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Lean drink is a slang term for a combination of prescription cough syrup and soda, or sometimes alcohol. It goes by a variety of other names including purple drank, sizzurp and Texas tea among others. The effects of the concoction combine a euphoric high with lethargy and physical dissociation. The combination can be addictive and has some risky side effects.
A form of lean drink developed in 1960s Houston around the blues scene when musicians combined cough syrup with beer. When wine coolers came on the scene, they used those instead of beer. Later in the 1980s and 1990s, a new form of the drink developed around the hip-hop scene of the time. The new concoction was made from prescription cough syrup and lemon-lime soda. Sometimes a hard candy would be added to the mixture. Rappers began mentioning the drink in their songs, which led to it becoming popular with teens and young adults in the area.
The popularity of lean soon spread outside of Houston with other rap stars talking about it and promoting it in their songs. By 2004, a study by the University of Texas found that over eight percent of Texas secondary school students had consumed purple drank.
Purple drank sees the highest popularity in southern states and the DEA has reported the most busts in Texas and Florida. A number of commercial products have cropped up using the slang terms for the drink, but do not contain the prescription cough syrup ingredient. The products also claim extreme relaxation and use ingredients such as herbs and melatonin. These products have drawn criticism for marketing to young people and thus becoming potential gateways to the real illegal concoction.
Lean drink has a number of risky effects and there have been several high-profile deaths connected with the concoction. The hip-hop artist who helped popularize the drink died in 2000 of an overdose of alcohol and prescription cough syrup. The main risks of purple drank are respiratory failure and cardiac arrest. The primary opiate ingredient of prescription cough syrup is a depressant, but the syrup also includes a central nervous system-depressing antihistamine, which increases the sedative effect. Many lean users also combine the concoction with alcohol, which further increases the risk for respiratory depression.
Even though the main opiate ingredient in prescription cough syrup doesn’t have the potency of heroin or even prescription painkillers, it still has addiction potential and that means withdrawal symptoms when stopped. One of the notable deaths from lean involved a rap star who also suffered from sleep apnea. Many sufferers of this condition do not know they have it. Lean combined with any other depressant can have devastating effects.
Current rap star Lil Wayne has talked about being addicted to lean and has suffered seizures due to a lean overdose. Another rap star Schoolboy Q said lean caused complications with his asthma and resulted in breathing difficulties.
Despite the lower potency of the opiate codeine found in prescription cough syrup, lean drink does have addictive potential. Once addicted, the withdrawal symptoms are similar to that of standard opiate withdrawal and may include flu-like symptoms. A person with a physical dependence on opiates will often need detox before continuing with further addiction treatment.
At Beaches Recovery in Jacksonville, Florida, treatment for lean addiction is available in a calm, caring environment. As a quality drug rehab that focuses on young people with addiction to drugs or alcohol, it is an ideal place to overcome your addiction to lean and start a new, healthier life. Some of the services provided at Beaches include:
If you or a loved one are suffering from an addiction to lean, Beaches Recovery can help. Don’t let addiction control your life for another day. Call us today at 866.605.0532 and start your journey to recovery at our quality drug rehab.