Tuesday, November 27, 2012

1 in 4 in U.S. Starts Drinking Before Turning 21: Report

Healthy Day News, November 26, 2012

"Underage drinking in the United States remains a serious public health issue, a new federal government report shows.
The analysis of data gathered between 2008 and 2010 from the U.S. National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that more than 26 percent of 12- to 20-year-olds reported drinking in the month before they were surveyed, and nearly 9 percent said they bought their own alcohol the last time they drank.
The purchase and consumption of alcohol by anyone under age 21 is prohibited in the United States." Read More

Mentors Needed For New Program At CREC Public Safety Academy

Hartford Courant (Hartford, CT) November 26, 2012

"Approximately 20 male and female mentors are needed by Nutmeg Big Brothers Big Sisters for an after-school youth mentoring program that is starting shortly at the Capitol Region Education Council's Public Safety Academy in Enfield. The announcement was made by Tara Gill, site-based coordinator for Nutmeg, who will be managing the program.
'Everybody at CREC and Nutmeg are extremely excited about this new venture,' said Gill. 'The program will meet every Wednesday during the school year from 4 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. The children being mentored are students from CREC's Public Safety Academy in Enfield. We're anticipating that many of the adults mentoring those children will be CREC employees, but we're also hoping that other men and women from Enfield and the surrounding communities investigate the opportunity to discover how much fun and rewarding a mentoring experience can be.'" Read More

Monday, November 26, 2012

Anti-Bullying Theater Program Latches Onto Lessons Of 'Sneetches'

Hartford Courant (Hartford, CT) November 26, 2012

"It happens in the hallways, on the playing field and over the computer. Books and documentaries show that bullying is a growing trend.
'I do see people manipulating each other and talking about each other and making people feel like they're not good enough,' says Taijah Irvin, a 13-year-old from Hamden, who is taking action by participating in an innovative anti-bullying project, intended to build confidence and camaraderie.
'The students are learning through their own exploration of the arts,' says Genevive Walker of the Connecticut Center for Arts and Technology, known as ConnCAT, a non-profit organization that opened in New Haven last spring with a mission to inspire and motivate youths and adults. The organization is partnering with the Long Wharf Theatre's education department to create this after-school program for area seventh and eighth graders." Read More

Actor likes show's anti-bullying message

News Times (Danbury, CT) November 23, 2012

"For 11-year-old Brandon Szep, 'The New Kid,' an anti-bullying musical, is personal.
Brandon, who lives in Southbury, is no stranger to acting. He has appeared in about 20 plays and musicals, including 'Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.' He played Kurt in 'Sound of Music' and recently appeared as a choir boy on the HBO show 'Boardwalk Empire.'
But, for Brandon, 'The New Kid' is different.
'I had some problems with being bullied at Pomperaug Elementary,' said Brandon, who then transferred to the Waterbury Arts Magnet School. 'This musical is kind of autobiographical.'
'The New Kid,' in which Brandon plays the title character, Zack, will be playing in New York and Connecticut through June 2013."  Read More 

Underage drinking still serious problem in all states according to new national report

SAMHSA, November 20, 2012

"More than a quarter of the American population who are too young to drink are doing so anyway according to a new report issued today by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
Although there has been progress in reducing the extent of underage drinking in recent years, particularly among those aged 17 and younger, the rates of underage drinking are still unacceptably high. Not only did 26.6 percent of 12-20 year-olds report drinking in the month before they were surveyed, 8.7 percent of them purchased their own alcohol the last time they drank. The study used combined data from SAMHSA’s 2008 to 2010 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH)." Read More

Raise voices to stop bullying

Greenwich Times (Greenwich, CT) November 20, 2012

"As a sixth-grade middle-school student, I am writing to give a voice to all of those being bullied. I will sometimes hear about bullying in schools, and I don't know how anyone could be so cruel! Bullying makes it difficult to learn, terrorizes students, and creates almost a monarchy for the students doing the bullying because everyone is afraid of them. Bullying should not happen, and I believe everyone should do more to enforce that!
If you were constantly bullied, or if you were afraid to walk to your next class, it would be hard to focus on your schoolwork."  Read More

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

CT Dept. of Mental Health & Addiction Services

WTNH News-8 (New Haven, CT) November 19, 2012

"Mary Kate Mason, Project Manager for the CT Dept. of Mental Health and Addiction Services, was here to impress upon us the importance of setting rules for minors with regards to drinking. Studies have found that when parents or guardians set clear rules and guidelines, children tend to follow them.
A group of state agencies, organized and sponsored by the CT Office of Policy Management has been working on a campaign to inform parents about underage drinking, brain development and the Social Host Law. The campaign, funded by Federal Enforcing Underage Drinking Laws Money, includes television, radio and print media in the hopes of reducing underage drinking." Read More

Workshop at High School Will Tackle Cyber-Bullying

East Hampton Patch (East Hampton, CT) November 19, 2012

"A social networking program for parents as a way to combat cyber-bullying will be held at East Hampton High School next week.
Sal Lifrieri, the president of Protective Countermeasures & Consulting, Inc. and the former Director of Security and Intelligence Operations for New York City’'s Office of Emergency Management during the Giuliani administration, will discuss the challenges facing parents and students during an informational seminar on Dec. 3 at 6 p.m." Read More

Haddam-Killingworth Fundraiser Nov. 18 To Support Healthy Communities – Healthy Kids Coalition

Hartford Courant (Haddam, CT) November 16, 2012

"The Connecticut State Police Troop F Barracks and the Healthy Communities – Healthy Kids Coalition are hosting a fundraiser to help support the coalition after its primary funding source runs out in 2014.
The two will host a pancake breakfast Nov. 18 at the Haddam fire station, 439 Saybrook Road, from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. The suggested donation is $10 for adults and $5 for children and students." Read More

Booze sales to minors found

Republican-American (Woodbury, CT) November 15, 2012

"The state Department of Consumer Protection has accused 11 town businesses of illegally selling alcohol to minors after conducting a sting operation Saturday.
In what a department spokeswoman called a routine compliance check of 15 businesses, underage accomplices from the Governor's Prevention Partnership working with the Woodbury Resident State Trooper's Office were allegedly served alcoholic beverages by employees at Daly Express Mart, Discount Liquors..." Read More

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Children born to stressed moms have a higher chance of being bullied

The Examiner, November 14, 2012

"Children are more likely to be bullied at school if their mothers were severely stressed during pregnancy, according to a study published Tuesday in the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry.
The finding came from a team at the University of Warwick, led by Professor Dieter Wolke, Professor of Developmental Psychology at University of Warwick and Warwick Medical School.
Prior research has indicated that stress in pregnancy can cause behavioral abnormalities in the child. However, until now, the effect of the stress on a child's vulnerability to bullying was unknown." Read More

Prescription painkillers ‘like loaded guns’ for teens

Health Policy Solutions, November 14, 2012

"Andrea was 15 when she started abusing prescription painkillers. As an adolescent, the Denver woman, now 31, dabbled in alcohol and marijuana with friends, but it wasn’t until she had her wisdom teeth pulled and was prescribed Percocet that 'I found what I’d been searching for, where my body felt like it was in a comfortable space in life.'" Read More

Ohio bill to address 'cat-and-mouse' drug game

CT Post (Columbus, OH) November 14, 2012

"A proposed Ohio law seeks to end what a prosecutor called a "cat-and-mouse" game involving chemists changing synthetic drugs' molecular content to keep them legal.
At issue are the sale and abuse of synthetic drugs such as bath salts and herbal incense, which can cause users to behave in bizarre and dangerous ways. Lawmakers first made the drugs illegal last year.
Current Ohio law bans a particular chemical compound used to make such drugs, said Matt Donahue, a special prosecutor with the Ohio attorney general's office."   Read More

Facebook launches 'bold' anti-bullying campaign

CTV News, November 14, 2012

"Social media giant Facebook is asking users to take a stand against bullying in the Be Bold: Stop Bullying national campaign.
Launched in Toronto on Wednesday, the online campaign asks youth, parents and educators to take a pledge against bullying, share stories about their own experience with bullies and encourages Facebook users to start their own bullying-prevention groups.
Facebook Canada managing director Jordan Banks said the campaign aims to specifically reach out to those who are witnesses to bullying." Read More 

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Addressing Bullying: Schoolwide Solutions

Education Week, November 13, 2012

"Kids have been bullying each other for generations. But for Generation Z, also known as the iGeneration or the Net Generation, the ability to utilize technology to expand their reach—and the extent of their harm—has increased exponentially. Bullying in all forms, face-to-face or via technology, is of course unacceptable, but today's school leaders need to arm themselves with new rules and strategies to address aggressive behaviors that hurt students' well-being, their academic performance, and school climates overall.
One 2011 report suggests that many schools are not adequately preparing students to be safe in today's digitally connected age. It cites basic online safety and ethics as two areas in which students need more education." Read More

Forum on Bullying at Glastonbury High School Cafeteria Thursday

Glastonbury Patch (Glastonbury, CT) November 14, 2012

"Rushford, a local substance abuse and mental health provider, and the Glastonbury Alcohol and Drug Council is hosting a free community forum on bullying this Thursday.
The forum will be held from 5:30 to 8 p.m. in the Glastonbury High School cafeteria, and is open to middle and high school students, parents, teachers, coaches and other community members who want to further explore the issue of bullying. The forum will feature a panel of experts, including members of the Glastonbury Police Department, the Glastonbury Youth and Family Services and members of Rushford." Read More

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Social exclusion and binge drinking in young people attracted to more than one gender

Medical Express, November 12, 2012

"A report by the University of Otago, Wellington shows that many young people attracted to more than one gender tend to binge drink because they feel stigmatised and socially excluded.
Lead author, Frank Pega, from the University's Department of Public Health and the Harvard School of Public Health, says that a minority of young people who are attracted to more than one gender binge drink. However, binge drinking is higher in this social group than in other sexual minority and heterosexual young people."  Read More

Parenting cuts genetic risk of teen drinking

Brown University (Providence, RI) November 8, 2012

"In a new study, addiction researchers found that attentive parenting can overcome a genetic predisposition to alcohol use disorder among teens. Although further research is needed, says lead author Robert Miranda Jr., parents can have an impact if they 'closely monitor their child’s behavior and peer group.'
In 2010 a team led by Robert Miranda Jr., associate professor (research) of psychiatry and human behavior in the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, found that teens with a single difference in their genes were more predisposed to alcohol use disorder. In a new study in Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research he found that the risk was largely overcome in teens whose parents are attentive to their behavior and peer group. Miranda, a researcher at Brown’s Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies, answered questions from science writer David Orenstein about the new study." Read More

Monday, November 12, 2012

Panel addresses issue of cyber-bullying

The Reminder (South Windsor, CT) November 9, 2012

"'The problem of bullying is ubiquitous,' said Charles Margolis, chair of the South Windsor Human Relations Commission. With the Internet opening up countless new ways for people to interact -sometimes anonymously - parents, educators and children have noticed over the years that bullying has been taken to the cyber arena. To address this issue, the South Windsor Human Relations Commission held a panel discussion entitled 'What every parent needs to know about bullying and cyber bullying' on Thursday, Nov. 8 at the Town Hall council chambers.
The first expert to speak was Dr. Bill Howe, who is a program manager at the State Department of Education, the chair of the Asian Pacific American Affairs Commission, and an adjunct professor at the University of Connecticut, Albertus College and Quinnipiac University. 'We do have a serious problem with bullying,' said Howe. 'Far too many children are being tortured emotionally… I believe it's a responsibility of every educator to ensure that every student that walks into a classroom is safe mentally and physically,' he said." Read More

Bullying news: Arizona football team steps up to help bullied girl (Video)

The Examiner, November 9, 2012

"PsychCentral.com reported on Nov. 9 that a football team in Queen Creek, Arizona stepped up to help a young girl overcome bullying in their high school.
The girl is Chy Johnson, a freshmen born with a brain disorder. She had suffered from the cruelty of bullies her entire life and one day her mother decided she had enough. Instead of approaching the high school administrators or teachers, two actions that rarely do any good, she took to Facebook.
Chy's mother reached out to a student named Carson Jones to get the names of the kids bullying her daughter. Jones chose to handle the incident in a different way. Jones is the starting quarterback of the undefeated Queen Creek football team, and he gathered the football players to join up to protect Chy at school from the bullies." Read More

Prescription drug abuse conference Friday

The Day (New London, CT) November 9, 2012

"The state Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services is sponsoring a conference from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Nov. 16 focusing on the growing problem of prescription drug abuse.
Members of the state’s prevention, medical, government, education, law enforcement and retail communities, and others, will gather at the Hartford Marriott Farmington for the event, titled 'Prescription Drug Abuse: A Connecticut Meeting of the Minds.'" Read More

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Teen girls and binge drinking: A dangerous mix

Sheknows Parenting, November 5, 2012

"We’ve all had the discussions with our teens about underage drinking, yet alcohol is readily available to them. For many teen girls, it has become the most important component of their social life. When alcohol becomes her BFF, the problems become serious.
Underage drinking continues to pose a huge threat to the health and well-being of our teens — and girls may be at a greater risk than boys. What starts as something fun and daring may quickly turn into a crutch she can’t manage social situations without." Read More

Teen prescription drug abuse: What to do

Philadelphia Inquirer (Philadelphia, PA) November 6, 2012

"Prescription drugs like OxyContin, Vicodin, Ritalin and Valium are the killer new teen high. One in six teens say he or she has taken a prescription drug at least once in the past year. One in 11 is drug-dependent and one in five show signs of dependence, a new study says.
While kids swipe pills from medicine cabinets and purses, trade them at school or pluck them from bowls at 'pharma parties,' parents are often clueless. We don’t think it can happen to our kids, so we say little, miss early warning signs and fumble opportunities to educate and protect our kids. During October and November, the Healthy Kids blog will look at this issue through the stories of former teen prescription-drug users now in recovery, their parents and local addiction-recovery experts working to treat addicted teens and help parents prevent this under-the-radar and illicit drug use." Read More

Monday, November 5, 2012

Food Allergies Can Make Kids Targets for Bullies

HealthDay News, November 2, 2012

"As the mother of a child with a severe peanut allergy, Nicole Smith was vigilant about reading labels and making sure teachers and school administrators understood that ingesting even a trace amount of peanuts could kill her son.
Dealing with the allergy was challenging -- and got more so when she heard an alarming story. When her son, Morgan, was in first grade, another student chased him around the playground with a peanut butter cracker, shouting, 'I'm going to kill you!'" Read More

Painkillers are frequently abused by young people

Medical News, November 4, 2012

"Prescription painkillers with trade names like Vicodin, Percocet and OxyContin are in almost everyone’s medicine cabinet. They’re so commonly prescribed that many people don’t think they’re dangerous like a street drug.
But painkillers are one of the most frequently abused drugs among young people, in part because they’re so readily available. In 2011, 9.8 percent of people age 18 to 25 and 5.9 percent of people age 12 to 17 reported nonmedical use of pain relievers, according to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health." Read More

Simsbury High Drug Sweeps to Continue, Student Drug Use Down

Simsbury Patch (Simsbury, CT) November 4, 2012

"It may be a new school year but Simsbury school officials are not letting up on tough policies implemented last year to curb student drug use.
In a letter to parents of high school students, Principal Neil Sullivan reported that as a result of a community-wide response to the issue of drug abuse, incidents of student drug abuse and possession have decreased. Last February, eight police canines were brought to Simsbury High School to search for illegal drugs in the school. No drugs were found during the search." Read More

Friday, November 2, 2012

Web App Helps College Students Enhance Academic Performance

The SOP, November 1, 2012

"ADHD prescription drug abuse among college students is a known concern among campus officials. The percentages vary, yet studies show that illicit ADHD drug abuse rates may be as high as 34% of a campus student body. Students use these `smart` drugs to improve their concentration, help them cram for exams, and enhance their overall academic performance. The Strong Institute, a leader of auditory brain stimulation programs for individuals with neurobiological disorders, has a solution: Brain Shift Radio offers students the ability to improve their focus without the use of drugs.
The core technique used in Brain Shift Radio was developed from the Strong Institute`s 30-plus years of research exploring how auditory brain stimulation can enhance cognitive function. Called Rhythmic Entrainment Intervention (REI), their technique has been proven to be nearly twice as effective as 20mg of Ritalin for focusing." Read More

Bullying has long-term health consequences

EurekAlert (Huntsville, TX) October 30, 2012

"Childhood bullying can lead to long term health consequences, including general and mental health issues, behavioral problems, eating disorders, smoking, alcohol use, and homelessness, a study by the Crime Victims' Institute at Sam Houston State University found.
'What is apparent from these results is that bullying victimization that occurs early in life may have significant and substantial consequences for those victims later in life,' said Leana Bouffard, Director of the Crime Victims' Institute. 'Thus, the adverse health consequences of victimization are much more far-reaching than just immediate injury or trauma. Understanding these long term consequences is important to assessing the true toll of crime on its victims and on society as well as responding to victims more effectively.'
The study, 'The Long Term Health Consequences of Bullying Victimization,' recommends investing in victim services and effective prevention programs, such as the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, a school based initiative for violence prevention. Programs can help address the immediate trauma, both mental and physical, that victims experience." Read More

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Town, ASAP to Enact Measures to Ensure a Safe Homecoming

Voices News (Bethlehem-Woodbury, CT) October 31, 2012 

"Woodbury Officer Frans Dielemans has seen the deadly result of underage drinking first-hand and with the Nonnewaug High School Homecoming slated for Thursday, November 1, he and ASAP, the local prevention council, remind parents that providing alcohol to minors is illegal.
On Thursday morning, November 1, residents will see signs reminding that 'Parents that host, lose the most' throughout town in strategic areas, according to Maryanne VanAken, a member of ASAP.
'This is the peak time for parents to buy kegs for their kids — Homecoming and prom,' Mrs. Van Aken said." Read More

The Arla Guide | Bullying is associated with a number of adolescent issues

Courier Journal, (Louisville, KY) October 30, 2012

"Bullying is a major public health issue. Currently, 30 percent of American adolescents admit to at least moderate bullying — either as the bully or the victim.
Bullying can make school an anxiety provoking time for both parents and kids. Peer pressure and cliques can be devastating for middle school youths and adolescents who are ostracized. Unfortunately, many times this snubbing leaves these children as vulnerable targets for bullying and discrimination." Read More

Home Medicine Cabinet Often Source of Teen Drug Abuse

American News Report, October 30, 2012

"The most likely source of illicit drugs for teenage drug abusers is not a friend at school or the neighborhood drug dealer. The danger lurks at home — in their parent’s medicine cabinet.
A University of Cincinnati study that examined over-the-counter (OTC) drug use among 7th-12th grade students found that 10 percent of the teens abused OTC drugs typically found in the home. The study also suggests that boys are at a higher risk of drug abuse than girls.
'Findings from this study highlight and underscore OTC drugs as an increasing and significant health issue affecting young people,' said Rebecca Vidourek, a University of Cincinnati assistant professor of health promotion." Read More

The Ups and Downs of Teen Substance Abuse In East Lyme, Old Lyme, and Lyme

The Lymes Patch (Old Lyme, CT) October 25, 2012

"While some people may have celebrated the new state law legalizing marijuana for medicinal purposes, drug and alcohol counselors who work with students in Lyme, Old Lyme, and East Lyme weren't among them.
A recent survey of drug use among students in East Lyme shows that though marijuana use has dropped among seniors, with 21.7 percent reporting recent use (about 5 percent fewer than reported smoking pot in 2008), it's on the rise in 10th grade." Read More