A site for parents and teens who want to be better informed about
drug abuse and addiction as it affects young people today.
Forward-looking parents see youth sports as not only a way to get physical exercise but also as a way to smooth some of the inevitable bumps and bruises of high school. A study published in 2011 shows that participating in team sports can also keep kids away from drugs.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse sponsored the study of 12,000 high school seniors between 1986 and 2001. The research included a review of existing data along with a series of surveys given to students. The surveys were administered during the students’ final year of high school and then several more times in the intervening years until age 26 years. The questionnaires asked young people about their exercise habits, history of team sports and any use of drugs, alcohol or tobacco.
Posted on November 13, 2013 in
Letting a person know that someone cares about them can really make a difference in their lives, according to a Penn State study on college students’ alcohol consumption.
When parents and friends let teens know they are concerned about their welfare they’re helping them see themselves as loved and cherished human beings. This caring attitude may spur the teens to care more about themselves.
The study was conducted by Jeff Hayes, a professor of counseling psychology in Penn State’s College of Education. One of Hayes’ goals was to let people know that when parents are lax about their teenagers drinking alcohol then the teen is less concerned. If parents abuse alcohol and seem unconcerned about their own actions, then the teens are also unconcerned. When parents set rules about alcohol use and do not find any humor in alcohol abuse students look at their actions more carefully and make wiser decisions about alcohol use.
Posted on November 5, 2013 in
Research & News
Parents seeking to keep their teenage children away from drugs face a significantly different situation from the one they might have dealt with. Instead of a shady character dealing pills or joints in a darkened school stairwell, teens can now buy drugs online.
A new report from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is the first national study to examine bath salts in the context of emergency room visits.
SAMHSA gathered information from various sources, including the Drug Abuse Warning Network (DAWN). The information is useful to policymakers, strategists for education and prevention and to clinicians that treat substance use disorders.
Posted on November 3, 2013 in
Bullying is the collective term for a group of physical, verbal and social behaviors meant to intimidate, control or manipulate others. Current evidence indicates that victims of bullying have significantly increased risks for a number of serious mental health problems, including depression and anxiety. In a new study published in August 2013 in The Journal of Neuroscience, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania identified a mechanism inside the brain that contributes to the intensity of bullying-related anxiety and depression. In the future, understanding of this mechanism may help doctors and researchers develop new treatments for counteracting bullying’s negative mental health impact.
Posted on November 1, 2013 in
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a serious mental health condition that appears in a significant minority of people in the aftermath of traumatic events that overstimulate the body’s built-in stress response. Teenage forms of this disorder closely resemble adult forms of PTSD, but vary in important ways. A new large-scale study, published in July 2013 in the Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, clarifies the specific risks for trauma exposure in teenage populations, as well as the chances that those teens who do experience a trauma will go on to develop PTSD.
Posted on October 30, 2013 in
Substance use disorder is the recently created mental health diagnosis that doctors now use instead of independently diagnosing substance abuse or substance addiction (substance dependence). For a number of years, researchers have explored the possible connections between treatment for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and increased future substance use disorder risks for teenagers and younger children. Such a potential connection stems from the use of medications containing amphetamine-like stimulants to ease the effects of ADHD. According to the results of a new large-scale study review published in July 2013 in the journal JAMA Psychiatry, use of stimulant-based medications in ADHD treatment does not increase a child’s future chances of developing a substance use disorder.
Posted on October 28, 2013 in
Bullying is the common term used to describe a range of verbal, social and physical behaviors designed consciously or unconsciously to assert power over other people. Substantial numbers of teenagers and younger children throughout the U.S. participate in these behaviors or get exposed to them in schools or other social environments. In a study published in August 2013 in the journal Psychological Science, an international research team examined the long-term mental, physical and social consequences of bullying participation and exposure. These researchers concluded that teens and children exposed to bullying continue to experience serious after effects of that exposure when they transition into adulthood.