Recent research indicates, including results of latest Monitoring the Future Survey-shows teen smoking and alcohol use down, marijuana use up. This is good in some ways and negative in others. It is also true the use of illegal drugs is down these days in teens as well. Although drinking rates are down in teens, they are still pretty high. Around two thirds or seventy two percent of all teens have admitted to trying alcohol to the point of mild intoxication. Smoking is down amongst most of the population these days and thankfully these numbers are crossing over to teens as well.
This does not mean that parents need to have less concern over their child using drugs and alcohol. The fact of the matter is that as a country, we are not yet in the clear. We still need to show vigilance and dedication in the education of our youth to the dangers of drugs and alcohol.
Although the use of illegal drugs, smoking, and drinking is down these days, the usage of prescription drugs in teens is actually quite elevated. Many teens these days are using drugs that they get out of their own household medicine cabinets to get a buzz. They often do this because they feel there is less danger in getting high from something that is labeled as “medicine’ as opposed to getting illegal drugs off of the streets. The fact of the matter is that most of the drugs that one finds one the street started their careers off as “medications” as well. Drugs are designed to make a person feel temporarily better, whether or not one gets them off the street or from their local drug store. Because these teens feel that these drugs are safe, they often do not bother to read the warning labels and also see what interactions one particular drug may have with another drug. This is a very dangerous practice, but teens are not just leaving it at that.
There is a very scary new kind of party that many teens are participating in these days as well. It is called a pharm party because the main attraction at the party is pharmaceuticals. Teens go “pharming” which means that they raid the medicine cabinets in there homes and get whatever drugs that they possibly can get that may cause them to get high. They then bring these drugs to the party and combine them with all the other drugs that the other people at the party may have brought in a big bowl or bag and mix them all together. People then randomly reach in and grab a small handful of pills and pop whatever pills that they got down the hatch. They often have no idea what kind of pills that they just took and no idea what kind of effect it is going to have on them.
Some of these kids probably get high out of their minds and then some kids probably just feel sick after taking whatever mixture of pills that they took. The problem is that many of these drugs do not mix well with each other and these kids are really putting themselves in danger taking them and having almost no idea what they just took. There have been quite a few cases of kids getting really sick and having to go to the hospital and a couple of unfortunate teens have died this way. The parents of one young man who died this way had no idea that their child was even on drugs. They were completely shocked that their son had died from a drug overdose because they just thought he was a normal kid who did normal kid stuff. The problem is that in our over medicated society, taking prescription drugs is not that out of the norm.
Another line of drugs that is gaining popularity these days is what is known as designer drugs. Designer drugs are drugs that are legal that are meant to mimic the effect of another drug that is illegal. These days there are two types of designer drugs that have gained a lot of popularity amongst our youth these days. The first of these drugs is synthetic marijuana. It is an herbal compound that is sprayed with what is known as synthetic cannabinoids. The effects are supposed to be very similar to those of marijuana but some people have experienced some very nasty side effects from these drugs. The side effects that many people experienced and came upon them suddenly where as follows:
- Feelings of panic
- Feeling an inability to breath
- Feelings of an inability to expel all the smoke from Spice out of their lungs
- Extremely elevated heart rate
- Distorted size perception
- Distorted sense of direction
- Loss of sense of identity
- Inability to speak coherently
- Repeating words or phrases over and over again
- Loss of coordination in limbs
One woman said that she took her son to the hospital after he used Spice and she said that his heart had to be restarted twice while there.
The other designer drugs that many people are using are known as bath salts and mimic the effects of cocaine and methamphetamines. These are VERY addictive and quite a few people have suffered constant hallucinations and delusions after long term usage. The reason for this is because when someone is using these drugs they often go without sleep or food for days at a time. Even when many people are off of these drugs for long periods of time they still suffer from delusions and hallucinations. The Narconon New Life Detoxification program has been shown to help some individuals be freed from their hallucinations and delusions caused by these drugs. Not enough data has been gathered as to the long term effects of these drugs because they have not been out for long enough. If you or someone you know has a problem with addiction to any of the drugs listed above or any drugs at all please contact your local Narconon center right away. There are centers located all over the world, from Narconon Arrowhead in Oklahoma to many Narconons all over Europe. Counselors are available twenty-four hours a day seven days a week via e-mail or telephone.