Articles

Addiction: The Monster That is Claiming Our Future

January 2005

The plague of addiction is growing ever larger in its scope. This plague has infected the most vulnerable and valuable asset in our world today: our youth. The most shocking realization is the extent of drug use, especially by children and teenagers. Each year more and more children enter treatment with a primary diagnosis of marijuana dependence than for all other illicit drugs combined. In 2002, 1% of eighth graders, 1% of tenth graders, and 0.8% of twelfth graders reported that they have injected heroin at least once during their lifetimes.

Parents: the Oblivious Drug Suppliers

February 2005

Without even realizing it, many parents are providing teenagers and their friends access to what has become the second most popular drug after marijuana: prescription drugs. It is estimated that an overwhelming one-third of all U.S. drug abuse involves prescription drugs (National Institute On Drug Addiction). Teens are getting these prescription drugs from their own homes, from friends, and through websites on the Internet. Some of these young people are taking pills from the family medicine cabinet and distributing them at school. What they don’t realize is that distributing drugs, even prescription drugs, is considered drug dealing and is not only illegal, but potentially lethal. Using prescription drugs without a doctor’s approval can lead to serious health problems, addiction, compulsive drug seeking, and in some cases – death. As a parent, it is your right to be informed. Here are some important facts and tips that may help prevent you from becoming an oblivious drug supplier.

Just Say NO: to Your Kids

March 2005

“They want to be their kids’ best friend and make sure they’re having fun, but what kids really need is for parents to be parents,” -Marsha Moritz (Parent Engagement Network)

Steroids

April 2005

Steroid use among teenagers is rising at an alarming rate, hitting an all time high in 2002, according to the NIDA. Harvard Medical School did a study that same year and found a shocking 500,000 teenage boys used steroids. The danger is not limited to males. Today, steroid use is growing most quickly among teenage girls who crave its fat burning power. Today’s society, unfortunately, is all about what is bigger and better. Steroid scandals break every month or two; athletes in some sports claim it is impossible to compete without taking something to get an edge.

Alcohol

May 2005

Alcohol is the number one abused drug among teenagers today. Approximately 7% of the nation’s eighth graders; 18% of tenth graders; and 30% of twelfth graders report they have been drunk during the last month. It starts early. It has been reported that alcohol use starts as early as the age of 13. That is children in the sixth grade.

Inhalants

July 2005

One of the most dangerous substances abused by children and teens can be easily found underneath your kitchen sink or on a shelf in your pantry. These toxic substances are collectively referred to as inhalants – breathable chemical fumes that create mind-altering effects. Many people are unaware that household items such as spray paints, nail polish remover, hair spray, glues, and cleaning fluids present any risk of abuse because their intoxicating effects are so totally unconnected to their intended uses. Yet, young children and adolescents are among those most likely to abuse them, and do seek them out for this purpose.

Brain Disease

August 2005

What would you do if you found out your teen had a potentially fatal brain disease? This disease, if not treated, would eventually consume your child for good. Most parents would immediately seek help and go straight to a physician, schedule a surgery, start a diet, whatever it took. Unfortunately, thousands of teens suffer from this disease: it’s called addiction. Does yours?

The Dangers of School

September 2005

It’s that time of the year again. All the kids are getting ready for school. You are stressed over school supplies, registration, and car-pooling the whole neighborhood… but have you considered the dangers school can present for your teens? Here are some 2001 survey statistics, taken from grades 9-12, that you should know about:

New Survey on Teen Sex

October 2005

Americans have a surplus of opinions about teenage sexuality. What they don’t have is cold hard facts. Every attempt to gather such information, such as Alfred Kinsey’s famous sex surveys in the 40’s ad 50’s, and University of Chicago’s in 1994, has been methodologically flawed and doesn’t fully cover the issue of teen sex.

Where did They Learn That?

November 2005

Society influences teenagers more now than in any other generation. Teenagers have a constant stream of voices coming from TV shows, video games, text messages, and radio stations. With the world at their fingertips, teenagers are constantly bombarded with images, audio clips, and text on the Internet telling them what to think, how to feel, and where to go. The media is indoctrinating our children.

Eating Disorders

December 2005

Eating disorders are very serious. Left untreated, they can be fatal. In a society that is obsessed with thinness and dieting, children are pressured at a young age to be conscious of their weight. Young women are especially targeted by digitally altered images of woman with enhanced features and unrealistic bodies. Carol Gilligan, a Harvard professor who studied psychological development of teenage girls in 1988, found that they experience a major drop in self-esteem during adolescence. Only 29 percent of teenage girls said they “felt happy the way I am,” as opposed to the 60 percent of nine-year-old girls. Gilligan suggests that teenagers’ crisis in self-esteem is attributed to the image that a girl has of herself and what society tells her she should be.