*Marijuana today leads to changes in the teenagers brain like those caused by Cocaine,
Heroin and Alcohol
*THC levels have rose from 4% in 1983 to 10-12% in 2009 to 0ver 30% today.
*Marijuana becomes a neurotoxin in the brain of teenagers.
*Teenage use before age 18 can lead to a loss of 8 IQ points which are never recovered.
*Marijuana is highly addictive at these THC levels.
*Driving is greatly impaired in teenagers who are high on marijuana.
Please visit the BestCare Prevention homepage to download and print the new Marijuana Fact Summary from the Statewide Marijuana Summit held in Madras, Oregon on October 18 2012.
Spread The Facts
Site for Teens
Suggestions on Drug Testing Teens:
* Drug test must be random.
* Drug test must be observed if done at home.
* Drug test 12-19 days apart.
* Alternate testing for Marijuana and then a full panel drug test to cover all other drugs.
"This is my friend.......Dream Stealer"
Seduction leads to deception which leads to delusion which ends in destruction.
Many years ago I went to my dentist Gerry to have a tooth checked. The aching, throbbing pain was increasing and I had put it off long enough. I don't really enjoy going to the dentist. Usually they are the bearers of bad news and I end up handing over a lot of cash. I have to say though, the idea of having very few teeth left was not very appealing either. So there I was, my mouth open wide as Gerry prepared to "numb me up". He would always pinch my cheek and say "this is our friend" and then he would stick me several times with a needle the size of my index finger. Well at least it looked awfully big. Novicaine is an amazing drug. Within minutes all my pain was gone and Gerry could go to work drilling and filling. I left his office an hour later, pain free, although still numb on the entire right side of my face.
A couple hours later the numbness started to wear off but a worrisome thing happened. As the novicaine wore off, the pain came back. I was perplexed and annoyed. What was the going on? I had trusted Gerry to solve my problem. He had failed, although the novicaine had worked just fine. A call was placed and at 9pm Gerry met me to see what the problem was. He said this was very unusual, but the work on one tooth had triggered a reaction in the neighboring tooth. So we went through the process again. He pinched my cheek and said, "remember the needle and novicaine is our friend". Well at that point I was ready to get my own needle and novicaine and pinch my own cheek. What did I need Gerry for? I could numb my own pain if it returned. Thankfully, Gerry fixed both teeth and the pain was gone.
Novicaine was truly my friend. It helped me through some tough pain.
I have often wondered what would have happened if I had self medicated and ignored the pain.
Hmmmmm ......teeth rotting and fallen out may not have been pleasant. My whole body could have been poisoned by the insueing infection. But who would have known. As long as I stayed numb to the pain and kept my mouth shut, no one would know.
As we we begin to look at youth drug issues, we must look at how they view their drugs, what the drugs do for them and how pain from life can drive a young person to self medicate to cope and find belonging in their peer group of choice.
One young man told me that "90% of his freinds smoked marijuana". He said for him, "it helped to take the edge off the anxiety he struggles with".
Another said, "I like using with my friends. We just chill and laugh. With all the doom and gloom in the world why not try to feel less anxious".
Many kids talk about marijuana, prescription drugs and alcohol as if they were very good friends. "if you are stressed out at school, a couple vicodin take the edge off". "When my parents are on my case about grades or chores I smoke some weed. I feel less anxious and can chill".
" According to the report "2009 Monitoring the future Results": "Marijuana is the most widely abused illicit drug in this nation among both youth and adults. Forty-two percent of high school seniors have tried marijuana, with 20.6% of them reporting that they have used marijuana in the last 30 days. Teens who start smoking marijuana at a younger age have a higher chance of drug addiction."
A 2002 Monitoring the Future Study conducted annually in our nations' schools since 1975 by the University of Michigan through a grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse found in all cases drug use has increased with continuous increases noted for seniors and 10th graders in small urban and rural areas.
"Marijuana use among youths has reached epidemic proportions. The level of tetrahydrocannibol (THC), the psychoactive chemical in marijuana continues to increase as a fault of genetic re-engineering, yet, society and policy makers undermine the full impact of marijuana abuse among our youths. THC has risen to as high as 37.2% in Oregon, reported in OCt. 2012 by Bestcare. "The result is a serious impairment of our marijuana smoking youths in their educational, social economic, and overall wellbeing as found by Dr. Kay Wachuka in his book "Marijuana Impaired Youth".
Similar detrimental effects can be linked with the prolonged teen use of spice, the synthetic version of marijuana, including: Lack of concentration, short-term memory, and critical skills needed for learning and processing information. Marijuana and its equivalent spice can also lead to more serious mental illnesses such as schizophrenia, anxiety, and even suicide.
Spice has mostly likely entered your community as another way for teens to experience highs. As spice is still legal to purchase in many states, it is logical that it will only grow in popularity."
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Young people often times lack the logical connection between substance abuse and adverse consequences from substance abuse. Street education and connection to peers offer immediate protection against thinking logically about the consequences of using and abusing drugs. For many youth, drugs offer a way of coping with the stresses, problems and pain of day to day life. Many who have been physically, emotionally, verbally or sexually abused, emotionally effected by a divorce or death in the family, experience neglect or have been impacted by the negative economy, use drugs as a way of navigating the pain so they can survive another day.
Peer pressure is the single most important factor in youth marijuana addiction. Kids must learn ways to resist this pressure. The longing to belong draws youth into relationships with marijuana smoking youth and it becomes a central social activity. Everyone wants to belong. Remember the theme song from the sitcom Cheers? "I want to go where everyone knows my name, Where all our problems are the same.....
Although novicaine numbed my pain for a time, it was not my forever friend. Marijuana is a dream stealer. Kids who smoke marijuana begin to lose their grasp on what was important to then. They let school slide, they give up on sports, they forget the ambitions they felt earlier in life and the see their dreams die. Relationships with family and significant others begin to crumble as well.
I find a subtle but a consistant attitude when talking with young people who use marijuana. They all seem to
downplay the effect on their course in life. Most lose sight of the horizon, the dreams they once had for college, sports and relationships.
We must educate our youth about the adverse effects of drugs. The THC levels in marijuana today is much higher than the 60's and 70's. Addiction is a very real possibility and health issues increase with young people who smoke regularly. Many kids will say "no one overdoses on pot". Actually this is not true. The potency of marijuana today has caused overdoses (Wachuka, Marijuana Impaired Youth).
We must teach them coping skills to combat the peer pressure. Just saying no is not so easy to when you are constantly bombarded at school with pressure to use.
We must surround them with caring adults who can help them deal with the day to day pain
that demands to be numbed out. If you walk around with awounded , hurting, or needy heart, you would be
tempted to take the needle and plunge it into your chest injecting anything that would
numb the pain.
Hurting hearts although numb, do not heal on their own. Many kids will need open heart surgery to heal the wounds. Then they will see through the fog, through the deception and delusion and realize drugs are not their friend.....its name is Dream Stealer, it is seductive and it leads to destruction not life.
Used by Permission only. Copyright Dan Hicks