A recent study done by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse has obtained some alarming results. It indicated that 17 percent of American high school students are smoking cigarettes, drinking or using drugs during the school day. Yes, during the school day.
In addition to this, of the 1,003 students surveyed, 86 percent admitted that they knew their classmates were using drugs or alcohol during the school day while more than half admitted that they knew of places on or close by campus where students could go to smoke, drink or get high.
Marijuana was said to be the most easily obtainable drug, followed by prescription drugs, cocaine and ecstasy. In fact, almost 44 percent of students surveyed admitted that they know of a fellow classmate who sells drugs. Many parents claim that private schools may offer a better environment for their children, but the number of students attending private schools who reported drugs on school grounds increased from 36 percent in 2011 to 54 percent in 2012.
Peer Pressure Effects Many
Many addiction experts believe that the reason for this problem is peer pressure. Peer pressure is an epidemic that affects hundreds of teens every day and now, with the Internet making available many social networks, there emerges a new form of peer pressure, appropriately referred to as digital peer pressure. Teens admitted that their curiosity of drinking or using drugs increased after viewing pictures of other kids partying. In fact, another recent study of over 10 million online messages, written by teens within the past year, revealed that they commonly talk about using drugs, drinking alcohol, hooking up and partying.
Many teens may agree that drinking and using drugs is cool and “in” and chatting with their peers over the internet offers a more private and quiet way to talk about this topic without their parents realizing it. The Internet also provides users with information and tutorials on how to use and obtain certain drugs as well as how to hide their use from parents and authorities.
Narconon Says Meetings Are A Solution
While education is key Narconon meetings are also a primary solution in handling this problem.
Kids should learn about drugs and alcohol as early as in kindergarten. Schools also offer courses such as the well-known D.A.R.E. program that specialize in drug and alcohol abuse as well as how to handle peer pressure and refusal methods. There are also many informational websites that may be of assistance.
In addition to school intervention and education, parents can talk with their kids more and inform them of the dangers of using drugs and alcohol. Teens should also be made aware of the social consequences of using drugs such as rumors or embarrassing pictures being posted on the Internet as well as the repercussions that may come from doing things you wouldn’t normally do if you weren’t under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
By educating our children and giving them the knowledge to make smart choices in their lives, we are sure to see a change in these statistics for the better and turn this cycle around.
In addition to this teens who are using drugs need immediate help. Parents should not pass off the behavior as “growing pains” or “experimentation.” If they find out that their son or daughter is using drug they should contact a qualified counselor for immediate, professional help.
For more information on how to stop the drug problem in schools, Narconon meetings or to get someone into a drug treatment program contact us today.