Friday, October 30, 2015

Human Rights Campaign Foundation and Partnership for Drug-Free Kids Join Forces to Prevent LGBTQ Teen Substance Abuse

Partnership for Drug Free Kids, October 28, 2015

"The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation and Partnership for Drug-Free Kids today released Preventing Substance Abuse Among LGBTQ Teens, an issue brief focusing on helping parents, educators and other youth-serving professionals understand the unique challenges – including bullying and family rejection – faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) youth that contribute to their heightened rates of substance abuse.

The issue brief is the first product of a new collaboration between HRC Foundation, the educational arm of the nation’s largest LGBTQ advocacy organization, and Partnership for Drug-Free Kids, a national nonprofit working to reduce substance abuse among adolescents. The two organizations are working together to develop content and materials for LGBTQ teens, as well as their parents and families. The resources are designed to promote understanding and provide practical guidance on protecting LGBTQ youth, along with reducing their risk of drug and alcohol abuse through better family support, safer schools and more caring adults in communities." Read more

For resources to talk to youth about the dangers of substance abuse, click here

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Teens prescribed opioids more likely to abuse drugs as adults, U-M study shows, October 27, 2015

"The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently approved the use of OxyContin for kids between the ages of 11 and 16, but a new University of Michigan study shows that legal prescription opioid use by high school students leads to a greater likelihood of drug abuse when the teens become adults.

According to the U-M study, high schoolers who use prescription opioids like OxyContin, Vicodin and other pain relievers are 33 percent more likely to abuse the drug by the age of 23.

'Most likely, the initial experience of pain relief is pleasurable, and this safe experience may reduce perceived danger,' Richard Miech, the lead author of the study and a research professor at the U-M Institute for Social Research, said in a press release." Read more

For resources to talk to your child about the dangers of prescription drug abuse, click here

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Five Tips for Parents to Prevent Drinking in College

SAMHSA, September 25, 2015

"The transition from high school to college is a big shift – and parents provide essential guidance and information to keep their young adults safe and healthy. Although a student may be open to discussing class selection, living arrangements, and schedules, having a conversation about parties and drinking isn’t as easy. For that reason, SAMHSA has developed some tools for parents to have that conversation – including one that addresses the dangers of underage drinking in college and can help young adults make informed and smart choices.

SAMHSA’s 'Talking With Your College-Bound Young Adult About Alcohol' parent guide and accompanying video called 'The Sound of Your Voice' provide approaches and tips for starting that important dialogue.

The resources highlight five tips to having an open conversation about alcohol with young adults:" Read more

For resources to talk to youth about the dangers of underage drinking, click here

Monday, October 26, 2015

JAMA article highlights trends of nonmedical prescription opioid use and use disorders

SAMHSA, October 13, 2015

"Today the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) published an article which indicates that while the percentage of nonmedical use of prescription opioids has decreased, the prevalence of prescription opioid use disorders, high-frequency use, and related mortality increased among adults aged 18-64 in the United States.

The article is based on analysis conducted by researchers at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The article shows that nonmedical use of prescription opioids among people aged 18 to 64 decreased from 5.4 percent in 2003 to 4.9 percent in 2013. However, the article shows that there have been increases in the following problems among adults aged 18-64 over the year:

  • Prevalence of prescription opioid use disorders (dependence or abuse) increased from 0.6 percent in 2003 to 0.9 percent in 2013.
  • Prevalence of high frequency use (200 days or more) increased from 0.3 percent in 2003 to 0.4 percent in 2013.
  • The mean number of days of nonmedical use of prescription opioids increased from 2.1 days in 2003 to 2.6 days in 2013.
  • Drug overdose death rates involving prescription opioids increased from 4.5 deaths per 100,000 people in 2003 to 7.8 per 100,000 people in 2013." Read more

For resources to talk to your child about the dangers of prescription drug abuse, click here

Friday, October 23, 2015

Excessive drinking is draining America’s economy

CBS News, October 16, 2015

"The astronomical costs associated with heavy alcohol use are taking a major toll on the U.S. economy, according to a new report from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention.

The study, published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, found that excessive drinking cost the U.S. $249 billion in 2010, a significant increase from the $223.5 billion reported in 2006. Over $100 billion of these costs were paid by the government.

'The increase in the costs of excessive drinking from 2006 to 2010 is concerning, particularly given the severe economic recession that occurred during these years,' Dr. Robert Brewer, head of CDC's Alcohol Program and one of the study's authors, said in a statement. 'Effective prevention strategies can reduce excessive drinking and related costs in states and communities, but they are under used.'" Read more

For resources to talk to your child about the dangers of underage drinking, click here

Thursday, October 22, 2015

The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids Responds to White House Plan to Address Prescription Drug Abuse and Heroin

The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids, October 21, 2015

"The White House has announced today that President Obama will host a community forum in Charleston, West Virginia on the prescription drug abuse and heroin epidemic in that state and in communities across the country. The President will announce a plan to help curb the flow of prescription painkillers and ease the path to treatment for individuals struggling with opioid addiction.

The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids, a national nonprofit working to reduce substance abuse among adolescents, has been integrally involved in development of the White House plan, and particularly in today’s launch of Safe Drug Disposal: A Guide for Communities Seeking Solutions. This new PDF created by the Partnership, in collaboration with Office of Community Oriented Policing Solutions (COPS), Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), will help communities take steps to safely dispose of medicines, protecting their citizens from accidental use, intentional abuse and environmental damage.

One of the key elements of the White House plan is broad-based support from media to bring awareness to this epidemic. Many of the Partnership’s longtime media partners are committing more than $20 million in time and space to this national effort. They include ABC-owned TV Stations, CBS Television Network, CafeMedia, Google, Meredith, The New York Times and Turner Broadcasting." Read more

For resources to talk to your child about the dangers of prescription drug abuse, click here

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Addiction to prescription drugs on increase in Connecticut, officials say

The Bulletin (Norwich), October 17, 2015

"Recovery from drug abuse is a long and hard road that requires acceptance of your past, recovering prescription drug addict Anthony Recck, of Willimantic, said.

Recck, 51, became addicted to prescription drugs in his 20s, after a series of knee surgeries. Once his prescription for Oxycontin ran out, he moved on to cocaine and later heroin.

'Once I had the taste it was a downward spiral,' Recck said.

After a divorce, losing his mother on Christmas Day and not being able to see his children, Recck’s addiction became a constant in his life." Read more

For resources to talk to your child about the dangers of prescription drug abuse, click here

Monday, October 12, 2015

Alcohol can rewire the teenage brain, October 5, 2015

"Alcohol is a drug. And every day, more than 4,750 American kids aged 15 and younger take their first full drink of this drug. That’s according to the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, or SAMHSA. And the problem is not just that this consumption is illegal. Kids who start drinking before age 15 also are five times more likely to become alcoholics or abuse alcohol than are people who wait until adulthood for their first sip. Another big problem for kids who experiment with this drug is that they are more likely than adults are to consume too much alcohol over a short period of time. This is known as binge drinking.

What few people realize is that binge drinking poses many risks that go well beyond getting drunk and acting irresponsibly. That’s why an organization of doctors has just issued a new report laying out those risks. It appeared in the August 30 issue of Pediatrics.

Lorena Siqueira is a pediatrician at Florida International University and Nicklaus Children’s Hospital in Miami. She studies teen alcohol use and helped write the new Pediatrics report. 'When kids drink, they tend to do heavy drinking,' she notes. Unfortunately, she adds, 'Their bodies are not ready to handle that kind of alcohol.'

Teens are most likely to binge drink." Read more

For resources to talk to your child about the dangers of underage drinking, click here

Thursday, October 8, 2015

October is National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month Blog, October 5, 2015

This month, across the world, from New York to New Zealand, thousands of schools, communities, organizations, and individuals will come together to release new resources, campaigns, and efforts aimed at raising awareness for bullying prevention. Nearly a decade old, Bullying Prevention Awareness month was initiated by PACER's National Bullying Prevention Center in October 2006. Since it began, the event has grown to an entire month of education and awareness activities, and is being recognized by schools and communities throughout the world. PACER recognized that students, parents, and people around the world need to become more aware of the serious consequences of bullying.

“National Bullying Prevention Month has grown more than we could have ever expected,” said Paula Goldberg, PACER’s executive director. “In less than 10 years, PACER has helped to create a bullying prevention movement with millions of individuals across the globe.”

PACER developed National Bullying Prevention Month to raise awareness and also to change the culture around bullying, which was historically considered a childhood rite of passage. “We know that bullying can lead to school avoidance, decreased self-esteem, depression, and even self-harm,” said Julie Hertzog, director of PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center. “Bullying intervention and prevention is something in which everyone can play an important role. Read more

For tips and resources to talk to your child about preventing bullying, visit our Resource Center here