Info for Parents on Drugs and Alcohol

FACTS EVERY PARENT SHOULD KNOW

  • Children rarely try cocaine, heroin, or any of the other "hard" drugs without first using alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana.
  • Today's marijuana is 6-14 times stronger than the marijuana used in the in 1960's.
  • The drugs teens are most likely to use and abuse are alcohol and tobacco.
  • One in three students in grade 4 feels "some" to "a lot of pressure" to use alcohol. One in four feels pressure to try marijuana, crack and cocaine.
  • The average age of the first use of alcohol is 12.
  • The percentage of 6th graders who have used drugs has tripled in the last decade.
  • The single leading cause of death among young people is drunk driving. The second leading cause is suicide.
  • Adolescents can become addicted to alcohol in only 6-18 months. For adults it takes 5-15 years.
  • Elementary age children who have learning or behavioral problems that go unresolved are at a statistically greater risk for alcohol/drug problems later on.
  • Children of alcoholics have a four to ten times greater risk of becoming alcoholics than children of non-alcoholics.
  • 15%- 20% of all children will be classified as serious substance abusers before they reach adulthood.

YOUNG PEOPLE ARE ESPECIALLY SENSITIVE AND SUSCEPTIBLE TO THE CHEMICALS IN DRUGS.

EXPERIMENTATION WITH DRUGS/ALCOHOL MAY PROGRESS FROM CASUAL USE, TO HEAVIER USE, AND FINALLY TO DEPENDENCY.

Don't be mislead by:

"I've only tried it once."

"It's not mine- I was just holding it for a friend."

"Everyone is doing it."

"It's only a little beer".

"I've quit".

"Go ahead and drug test me. I'm clean. Don't you trust me?"

Time and again, kids say their parents are the single most important influence when it comes to drugs. So this message needs to start with you.

  • Kids need to hear how risky drug use can be.
  • They need to know how damaging it can be to their lives.
  • And they need to begin by listening to someone they trust.
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