In the high school parking lot on Friday afternoon, after school, Seth faces a difficult dilemma. Makko: Are you going to the party at Trisha's tonight, dude? Makko puts his arm around him Seth's shoulders. Seth: I guess. Makko: My man, it's B.Y.O.S. You've got some, right? Seth: I don't really have... Makko: A stash...I can fix that. You want me to hook you up, dude? Seth: No, it's okay.
COCAINE and CRACK Cocaine belongs to a class of drugs known as stimulants, which tend to give a temporary illusion of limitless power and energy that leaves the user feeling depressed, edgy, and wanting more. Cocaine is usually snorted through the nose but it can also be injected intravenously. Crack is a form of cocaine that has been chemically altered (freebased) so that it can be smoked. Physical Risks Associated with using any amount of Cocaine/Crack: * Increases heart rate, blood pressure, breathing rate, and body temperature. * Heart attacks, Strokes, and Respiratory Failure * Brain Seizures * Reduction of the body's ability to resist and combat infections * If using shared needles, hepatitis and/or AIDS Psychological Risks * Violent, erratic, or paranoid behavior * Hallucinations and "Coke Bugs", which is a sensation of insects crawling on or under the skin * Confusion, anxiety, and depression * Losing touch with reality (commonly reffered to as "Cocaine Psychosis") You can die from Cocaine the very first time you use it, due to the rapid effects it has on your heart and nervous system.
Alcohol belongs to a class of drugs known as 'depressants' because they slow down parts of the brain, such as judgement, reaction time, and motor skills. It also slows down the nervous system, lowering the heart rate and slowing breathing respirations. Alcohol is a legal drug (for people 21 and over in the United States and 18 and over in parts of Australia and Canada) and is most commonly used. If taken in moderation alcohol does not harm most people. However, regular excessive drinking of alcohol can cause a variety of health, personal, and social problems. Alcohol passes straight into the bloodstream from the small intestine and stomach.
Sooner or later it's going to happen, if it hasn't already. You're going to attend a party or find yourself in a situation where drinks are being served. I'm talking about anything from lite beer to mixed alcoholic drinks. I can already hear you saying, "C'mon Liz, there's nothing wrong with a beer." And you're right - there is nothing wrong with the beer, but there is something wrong with the way we handle, use and think about that drink. Hey, I'm not just talking about teens here.
Q I have a 15-year-old son who smokes. Not much but it's only the start. We don't know how to make him understand the situation. His two grandfathers and one grandmother died from heavy smoking and he knows it. We (parents) were also smokers in the past but not now and he doesn't get it. Please help us. - Marcia A I hope some of these ideas will help you. It is not easy to explain the concept of mortality to a teenager.
Q: Dear Dr. Sylvia, I am a single parent of three teenagers; a senior girl, age eighteen, a sophomore boy, age sixteen, and a freshman girl, age fourteen. My family is in crisis. I've raised these children alone since they were one, three, and five, and now my son is involved with drugs, alcohol, and is on probation. He was busted two weekends ago for MIP, driving under the influence of pot, possession of pot, and possession of paraphernalia. I couldn't believe it.
BACKGROUND Before we talk about the specifics of teenage drug use let me first mention the obvious. General drug use and/or abuse are an accepted part of our society. Hardly anyone questions the basic assumption that you take drugs to reduce tension, to lose weight, to concentrate, to get rid of a headache, to feel sociable, to sleep better, to kill a cold, etc., etc., etc.... Drugs temporarily hide those nasty annoyances that accompany life at the end of the Twentieth Century.
Q:Our 16-year-old son has been acting strange lately. He stays in his room a lot, keeps to himself and seems very secretive. Could he be getting into drugs? Guest Expert Hilorie Baer, MSW, answers: Mood swings and changes in attitude and behavior are often seen in teenagers and may simply be signs of normal adolescent angst. However, if they are extreme or are affecting the child's functioning, they could be signs of drug abuse or some other serious problem and should not be ignored.
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