Teen Substance Abuse

Prescription Drug Abuse Rising Among Youth
Illegal drug use is declining among youth, while the abuse of prescription drugs, especially pain relievers, is increasing. Many abuse prescription drugs thinking that they are safe, when in fact they can cause addiction and severe side effects.
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Youth Trade Drugs at “Pharming” Parties
Prescribed Ritalin, OxyContin stolen from medicine cabinets at home, and other psychoactive prescription drugs are the stock in trade at so-called “pharming” parties, where young people trade medicines and often mix pills with alcohol to get high.
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23 Tips For Raising Drug-Free Kids
Kids and drugs. It can be an overwhelming issue to deal with — but it doesn’t have to be. All you really need to begin are the 23 easy tips on this page. Put them into practice and your kids will reap the rewards of healthy, drug-free lives.
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Binge Drinking On the Rise
Binge drinking (having five or more drinks in a sitting) is common in most segments of society in the U.S., and is climbing fastest among 18 to 20-year-olds, who are too young to drink legally.
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Parents Warned About 24-Proof Gelatin
There’s a new front in the fight to keep alcohol away from kids — school lunch boxes. The popularity of Zippers is rising, packaged cups of fruity-flavored gelatin and alcohol.
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Bidis cigarettes (photo)
Candy Flavored Cigarettes Gaining Popularity
Bidis are produced in a variety of candy flavors, including grape, lemon-lime, mint, and wild cherry. These attractively and exotically packaged imports are addictive, dangerous, and rapidly gaining in popularity.
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Additional Online Resources

Tips For Raising Drug-Free Teens
Helps parents monitor their kids and be proactive in their lives. It also encourages parents to learn about popular drugs and to know the dangers of these drugs. Parents will also find information on ecstasy — with descriptions, slang terms and warning signs to watch for.
Alcohol: What You Don’t Know Can Harm YouA Lesson Learned About Alcohol from Harry PotterAlcohol Treatment and AdolescentsMarijuana’s So-Called Gateway Effect

The Role of Parents in Addressing Underage Drinking

Tips for Teens: The Truth About Alcohol


Teen Statistics

  • Teenagers whose parents talk to them regularly about the dangers of drugs are 42% less likely to use drugs than those whose parents don’t, yet only 1 in 4 teens reports having these conversations.1
  • Alcohol is the most commonly used drug among young people.2
  • Alcohol kills 6½ times more youth than all other illicit drugs combined.2
  • Youth who drink alcohol are 50 times more likely to use cocaine than young people who never drink alcohol.2
  • 40% of those who started drinking at age 14 or younger later developed alcohol dependence, compared with 10% of those who began drinking at age 20 or older.2
  • 65% of the youth who drink alcohol report that they get the alcohol they drink from family and friends.2
  • 10% of teens say that they have been to a rave, and ecstasy was available at more than two-thirds of these raves.3
  • Although it is illegal to sell and distribute tobacco products to youth under age 18, most underage smokers are able to buy tobacco products.2
  • Underage drinking costs the U.S. more than $58 billion every year – enough to buy every public school student a state-of-the-art computer.4
  • 28% of teens know a friend or classmate who has used ecstasy, with 17% knowing more than one user.3
  • By the 8th grade, 52% of adolescents have consumed alcohol, 41% have smoked cigarettes, and 20% have used marijuana.2
  • In 2000, more than 60% of teens said drugs were used, kept, or sold at their school.3
  • 50% of high school seniors report drinking alcohol in the past 30 days with 32% report being drunk at least once in the same period.2
  • Most people begin smoking as adolescents. Among youths who smoke, the average age of initiation is 12.5 years of age.2
  • Drivers age 21–29 drive the greatest proportion of their miles drunk. (Miller et al., 1996c)
  • Traffic crashes are the greatest single cause of death for all persons age 6–33. About 45% of these fatalities are alcohol-related crashes.2

Partnership For A Drug-Free America
Substance Abuse: The Nation’s Number One Health Problem
National Survey of Substance Abuse Attitudes, Feb. 2001
Mothers Against Drunk Driving