May 6, 2014 7:16 pm

N.S. teens say beezin is ‘weird’, doctors say it can be risky

HALIFAX – Doctors in Nova Scotia say a new trend spreading through social media isn’t toxic for teens but add it isn’t a wise idea.

Beezin involves putting Burt Bee’s lip balm, which contains peppermint oil, on your eyelid. There are reports it can give you a feeling similar to when you’re high or drunk.

Many teens in Halifax tell Global News they just think it’s downright silly.

Santiana Cameron, 17, first heard about beezin several weeks ago on Facebook.

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“I saw a picture saying they were putting it on their eyelids. I read it and thought it was bizarre to say the least,” she said.

The teen adds the idea of lip balm and getting high just doesn’t add up for her.

“It just doesn’t seem like a good idea. I just don’t think it’s a smart thing to be experimenting [with your eye],” she said.

In an era with the cinnamon challenge, neknomination and now beezin, teens say the trends are getting bizarre.

“I find it ridiculous but whatever floats their boat I guess,” Cameron said.

“I think it’s weird. I don’t see a point to it to be quite honest,” said Emma Kempster, 15.

“It’s just another way for kids to get attention from everyone else by finding some kind of high out of something that’s not really supposed to be getting you high,” said Shondel Cooper, 19.

Many teens say they have not heard of any cases in Halifax but they quickly add it’s not something they would want to even try.

“Going to that extreme length is just a bit odd to me,” said Riley McCready, 14.

“I would never have thought that putting lip balm on your eyes would be anything,” said Curtis Fayant, 19.

“I’ve heard of some crazy ways to simulate getting high before but this is probably taking the cake,” said Liam Featherstone, 16.

The province’s Chief Public Health Officer warns beezin may be risky.

“The direct effect of putting that substance, irritating substance in your eyes, the risk that could do to the health of your eyes. It could cause some permanent damage,” said Dr. Robert Strang.

Dr. Nancy Murphy, the medical director of the IWK Regional Poison Control Centre, tells Global News that no cases of beezin have been reported to local emergency rooms.

However, she is skeptical the act can even cause a drunk or high feeling.

“There’s absolutely no scientific, toxicological basis for the idea that lip balm on the eyelids causes any enhancement of the high. It’s simply an irritant due to the peppermint oil,” she said.

“It’s just sort of a tingling sensation in the eyelid. If there’s some that runs into the eye, they can feel a burning sensation in the eye.”

Murphy said beezin is not toxic or even potentially fatal, but she hopes parents discuss it with their teens.

“Maybe it’s going to start a conversation about other more dangerous things that come up around drugs and alcohol,” she said.

 

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