Safe Use of Medicines Is Important in Drug Abuse Prevention

Many cases of drug addiction started from mere curiosity. An error in the use of a prescription drug, for example, could have led to experimentation. In a typical case, the person probably enjoyed the euphoria he experienced when he first took the drug, and this made him use the drug repeatedly.

This is the same reason why parents have to be extra careful about the drugs they keep in their medicine chests. A young child may be tempted to try what a bottle in the chest contains, adding to the many cases described above.

Time and again, it’s been said that prevention is better than cure, and this applies to drug addiction: It is a lot better to prevent the problem from happening than to deal with it when it does occur. There are many ways by which drug abuse prevention is applied best, and one of these is in using drugs safely.

If a list of safe drug use is to be made in this regard, it will most probably be topped by this: A person should not take doses of drugs beyond what have been prescribed by his doctor. In addition to this, he should follow the instructions indicated on the medicine label to a tee.

Unused portions of medicines should not be saved for future use, unless this has been consulted to a doctor. Also, drugs that have been prescribed to you must not be shared with anyone else just because you think you have the same case of illness. There could be serious consequences – drug addiction included – if a person takes medicines or drugs that are not intended for him.

If a person feels he is ill and decides to see a doctor, he should provide enough information to the doctor about what he feels is wrong with him. This is important so that the doctor can prescribe the appropriate medication and treat him effectively. The person also has to make sure that the doctor knows all the drugs he uses regularly, whether these are nonprescription or prescription medications. This is to avoid the risk of drug interactions or over-dosage.

A person should keep a record of any bad reaction he has had to a drug prescribed to him. Such reaction may include getting into an intense state of euphoria. The person may mistake the condition for well-being, and here lies the potential for addiction or abuse as the person craves for more of the drug.

Signs of Drug Abuse – Seven Clues to Look For

This question is one of the most often asked when one of our presenters is speaking to a group of parents or teachers. How to tell if a young person is abusing drugs?

While there is no single way to know with certainty when a person has started experimenting with drugs, there are actually many changes that can indicate drug use. These changes are in the areas of appearance, mannerisms and attitude. Also there can be changes in participation in group activities, a lessening in motivation toward prior goals and a lowering of his/her general willingness to help.

Because a person on drugs usually needs to hide his activities, usual mannerisms begin to change. This “hiding” shows up in many ways, no matter how much he tries to make everything appear normal.

Watch for Changes in the General Mannerisms

1. The person cannot comfortably look you in the eye when speaking,being spoken to or approached.

Even though this is sometimes merely a sign of low communication skills and basic shyness, when it shows up as a change, it is often an indicator of drugs.

2. The person is very unreliable.

The person is not dependable, shows up late to school/work and it keeps getting worse, despite efforts at correction.

3. Generally sad, grumpy or a not caring attitude.

This could be the person’s normal way. However it is also a tip-off that there is a drug abuse problem, especially if it is a sudden change from the usual.

4. Short attention span, does not listen well.

Children are easily distracted. That is why the average kid’s TV show is a constantly changing, flash-flash of images. Keeping them focused can be a challenge. But the inability to focus could also indicate a drug use problem, especially if it is a relatively recent change.

5. Sudden change in friends.

Another strong indicator is a sudden change in friends, especially if the new group acts a suspiciously and rarely wants to be around the parents or in the house. This is another way that the person separates himself from those who might not agree with his new activities.

6. Monday morning ‘blahs’.

Some of the new “club drugs” often leave the user with a pronounced depression the day or even days after they are used. The more often these drugs are used, the longer the period of depression can last.

7. Changes in sleeping or eating habits.

Normal sleep habits very often change when a person begins to use drugs regularly. They might stay up late and then sleep away the day. They also might begin to sleep very little for long periods and then sleep solidly for 36 hours. these are indications of drug abuse.

Always be alert

At first you might not see any physical signs of drug use. It takes time for the body to show the effects, especially when drug abuse starts

Again, the most important things to be alert for are sudden changes in attitudes, and behavior patterns. Of course, the process of growing up is a process of change, but things like being tired all morning, or suddenly happy or awake after lunch or a break could mean the person is using drugs to get through the day.

Child Drug Abuse Prevention Tips For Parents – 7 Ways to Help Promote Your Child’s Safety

Having an open caring relationship with an adult role model is a critical piece of preventing drug abuse in children.

Parents and primary care givers have a critical role in preventing children’s in involvement with drugs and alcohol. It is a virtual dead certainty that your child will come in contact with drugs and alcohol sooner rather than later. How they handle it can be largely determined by parental involvement and preparation. Please do not ignore this problem and hope it will simply go away. Here is why.

Some facts on child drug use. (Office of National Drug Control Policy)

o The single leading cause of death among youth is driving under the influence.

o The second leading cause is suicide. Drugs are present 60% of the time.

o The average age of first use of alcohol is 11 years old.

o Of children who use alcohol or drugs before age 15, 40% are later classified with an addiction.

No parent wants to see their child involved with drugs. The likelihood of a child associating with drug-using friends is reduced by a close relationship with their parents There are some specific steps you can take to help your child be properly prepared to meet the challenge of drugs and alcohol. Here they are:

1. Give clear messages and expectations that using drugs is not OK. Don’t assume your child knows your views, state them and make them clear as a bell.

2. Be a good, active listener. Be alert to both spoken and implied messages when you or your child is speaking about drugs. Have discussions not arguments.

3. Help with your child deal with peer pressure to use drugs. Review possible scenarios or listen to what has happened. Work out the possibilities both the pros and the cons of the situation as well as expected or potential outcomes. Help to plan appropriate actions and empower your child to act.

4. Get familiar with your child’s friends and parents. Meeting your children’s friends will give you a sense of their personalities, what they are “into”,” and their family situations. Don’t be too quick to judge a child’s friends, though. Radical styles and unconventional appearances may be nothing more than a badge of identity.

5. Know your child’s whereabouts. Children who had the least amount of monitoring or ‘latchkey’ kids are at greater risk of drug use and at earlier ages. Check up on your child’s whereabouts.

6. Supervise activities. Unsupervised parties or activities are an open invitation to drug use.

7. Have open, honest and sincere conversations with your child about using drugs and alcohol and the consequences.

These tips are just the tip of the iceberg on proactive steps you can take as parents in protecting and preparing your child for exposure to drugs and alcohol use. More information and resources are freely available.

Drug Abuse Prevention, Communications & Information – The Keys to Helping Your Kids &Your Friends

You can prevent someone near you from getting hooked on drugs or stopping an addiction with not a lot of effort and talent. Start with honing your communication skills. Decide to get into a conversation about the dire effects upon the mind and body with the person you love or know has a problem.

But how to do it?

First, consider what NOT to do: Do not overload him or her with too many statistics or with a preacher-like lecture. There is an old saying that “A mind that ‘s changed against its will is of the same opinion still.” There’s a lot of truth in that bit of wisdom. Rather start any conversation establishing agreement (on any subject). Establish agreement so that the person feels comfortable with you in the conversation rather than being on the defensive because of the overload of information being shoved at him or her in a too-long lecture. A lecture is not a real communication.

A real communication is a two-way street in which information is both sent out, received with understanding, and then completed with an answer that deals with the subject at hand.

Also, any real communication is done by keeping a “low gradient” on the subject. In other words, start with a subject, such as the weather, sports, or another area of common interest in which agreement can be sought easily with no disagreement whatsoever. Instead of hammering a person with a ton of statistics about how bad drugs are, how much drug abuse is associated with crime, violence, unhappiness, etc., etc., etc., statistic, statistic, statistic, just keep the message easy to understand and with a minimum of emotion. You will know when you are successful at communicating when the two-way conversation is comfortable between the two of you. With a youngster, that may take awhile and might take several conversations spread over days or weeks.

When your youngster or other friend is comfortable talking to you about the dangers of street-drug abuse, you wil find that you need reference materials that are easy to read and understand. They, in effect, are third party influences that do not come from “mom and dad.” Instead, the youngster is more willing to accept the “third party” authority of the booklets that you can give them. (After all, what do mom and dad or grandpa and grandma know about anything anyway?)

Also, know that your children looks up to you more than you realize, even though they would never admit it.

Concurrently, they also face peer pressure so intense that you have to do something positive to offset it. You can also use the booklets to role-play situations in which your child is confronted by an overbearing drug-pusher. When your child stops the pusher in his tracks with a resounding “no,” you will have succeeded even though you were never told what happened.

Drug Abuse Prevention – A Simple Approach For Parents

It’s sometimes a tough thing for you as a parent to confront, not being in control of what happens to your child.

But there are things you can do to have more influence. The basic fact is that the more a person knows about something, the more responsibility he can take for it and the more he can control it.

I want to emphasize straightaway here that the philosophy behind this article is all about applying simplicity to the subject. It’s about basics. The world can be such a complex place but the truth is simple – and the truth about drugs is simple. So it is possible to get it across to someone easily.

It may be a cliché but knowledge IS power and the knowledge which you have and then share with your young person can give you that control which you desire.

Now this is not control in a bad way. Let’s face it, a lot of us don’t like to be controlled and most certainly teenagers don’t generally like to be controlled. But being in control so that your teenager does not get into trouble is positive control and it just has to be exerted in such a way that it is not forceful, not make-wrong and hopefully not even obvious.

A survey done by the BBC in Britain a few years ago highlighted the fact that parents are still largely the number one role models in young people’s lives, not some pop singer or sports star. So here’s another thing for you to confront as a parent – your own behaviour, habits and attitudes concerning drugs and alcohol – because they are noticed.

This whole experience of ensuring a safe and happy start in life for your young person starts therefore with you. Just let me reassure you – the more you know and understand the subject of drugs, the easier it gets to deal with it.

Ask any person in his twenties who got into problems with drugs and he will go back to the first experience in his teenage years and tell you that things would have been different if he’d had some real knowledge about them.

Education does start in the home and if a young person is not getting the right knowledge at school or from his friends, then he definitely needs to get it at home. In a world full of misleading and false information about drugs and alcohol, a young person needs stable data to dispel the confusion that inevitably can occur. Just one stable datum can bring certainty where uncertainty existed before – and this reduces the vulnerability of young people in the face of peer pressure.

So help your young person to be more in control. Educate them on what drugs are and how they affect the body and the mind. With more certainty on a subject, young people will be more confident in their decisions. But give them the power of choice. Give them the responsibility. Of course there can be a lot of peer pressure to use alcohol and drugs, but ultimately it is their decision. Rarely is a person pinned down and forced to drink alcohol or take a puff of a joint.

Don’t preach and don’t force your opinions on them. Be honest in answering their questions. Treat them as intelligent, responsible individuals and you can get intelligent, responsible behaviour in return. That might sound like a leap into the unknown for you but just think back to when you were their age – how would you have wanted to be treated?

The author is a part-time lecturer in the field of drug prevention. He gave his first lectures in 1993 and averages about 10,000 young people a year. This he does around his work in the wellness sector where he works mainly with water, algae and salt. He puts a lot of emphasis on the power of simplicity.

Drug Abuse Prevention

As with so many of today’s social ills, the use of mind altering drugs and hallucinogenic substances became popular back in the sixties, along with the rise in sexual promiscuity, gang violence, teenage rebellion and many other social anomalies. This is also the time when we would begin seeing the beginnings of the dismantling of the traditional family structure, a key element in any drug abuse prevention effort. So the task of dealing with this menacing element of today’s society is more challenging. This is not to say however that drug abuse prevention is not doable it only makes it tougher when there is little to no strong family support.

So How Do We Tackle This 50-Year-Old Problem?

Two words: “Early education.” We can no longer afford to wait until a child is beyond his/her formidable years and on into the teenage and adolescence stages of their lives before we begin talking about the dangers of getting involved with drugs. We live in a very corrupt society and our kids are exposed to the ills and ugliness almost from conception. They watch violence and drug use on TV. Drugs and gang violence has even made it into the video games kids are playing. Children in the inner cities across America are all too familiar with the local neighborhood dealers. And on and on it goes.

Therefore a truly effective drug abuse prevention program must start at an early age in the child’s life. After all we are talking about prevention, which by definition means to “not allow”. Once a person becomes involved with drugs, you’re beyond the prevention stages and into the curing and rehabilitating stage.

Early education about the consequences of drug use can take on, and frankly should, take on many different forms, and involve several segments of the society. First and foremost the child needs parental guidance. Unfortunately today’s family structure as mentioned above may not always be ideal or as strong as it should be for a number of different reasons. Nevertheless some form of structured leadership within the home is vital to the success of a drug abuse prevention for children and adolescence.

Teachers and educators in our school system have a huge role to play in convincing kids of the dangers awaiting them with that first puff of Pot. Our education system must take a stronger stand in this endeavor, as more often than not, young kids have certain teachers they see as role models, and these are the people who can truly make a difference in this fight. Clergy and other religious organizations can and should step up as well. As leaders in the communities, they own as much of this problem as anyone.

And what about the rest of us? Should we stand by and wait for the government to come up with effective drug abuse prevention laws and measures? If that’s what you’re waiting for…Good Luck! And if you are of the belief that there’s nothing you can do to help resolve this issue, you’re dreadfully mistaking, for there’s lots you can do:

Start an after-school mentoring program
Become a softball, flag football, soccer coach
Become a tutor. Help kids with their homework
Give a child an after-school job
Join a “Big Brother/Big Sister” organization
Etc., etc., etc.

If enough of us can find ways to somehow place ourselves smack dab in the middle of a kid’s leisure time, we can become part of the most effective drug abuse prevention program ever. Hillary Clinton once said, “It takes a village to raise a child.” And she was right.

Drug Abuse Prevention In The Sports World:

One of the most unfortunate trends in the whole arena of drug abuse is the recent rise in abuse found among our major athletes. These men and women are our heroes. Our kids look up to them and want to be just like them. Developing a drug abuse prevention program for athletes is absolutely crucial. This is especially true when we consider the number of body-builders, wrestlers, football players, and other athletes whose lives were cut short because of substance abuse.

The world of sports thrives on competition. Being the best you can be. Getting that competitive edge over the other guy. And too often our bright young men and women risk their lives pursuing that “one little something” that will give them the edge and make them faster, bigger, stronger. Clearly finding the answer to drug abuse prevention for our young athletes will be a daunting task. But it can, and must be done.

One approach might be to consider using the drug-abusing athletes themselves.

“I’m sick, and I’m scared. Ninety percent of the athletes I know are on the stuff. We’re not born to be 300 pounds or jump 30 feet. But all the time I was taking steroids…My hair’s gone, I wobble when I walk and have to hold onto someone for support, and I have trouble remembering things. My last wish? That no one else ever dies this way.”

These are the words of professional football player, Lyle Alzado, before he died as a result of his steroids use. Who knows how many youngsters could be saved if we implemented a program that required athletes found guilty of drug abuse, to spend time with young high school and college hopefuls, warning them of the dangers of using performance enhancing drugs.

Legal Drug Abuse Prevention:

Lastly let’s talk a bit about the “pill poppers”. You know those people who think they cannot live without their, painkillers, sleeping pills, tranquilizers, muscle relaxants, etc. This group of individuals might just be the easiest group to help with a drug abuse prevention program. I say this because these people by and large have made themselves sick primarily by way of inadequate, nutrient-deficient diets. The old adage, “You are what you eat” is so true. Eating chemically processed foods and trans fatty fast foods is beginning to take its toll on the American society and many other cultures around the world.

The lack of readily available good wholesome nutritional foods is what causes many of the ailments that lead to loss of sleep, muscle tension, hyper activity, and other conditions that have individuals seeking drug relief from their physicians to fight these ills.

Fix the food nutrition problem in this country and you just may find another answer to effective drug abuse prevention for a number of pill poppers.

Drug Abuse Prevention – Before and After Hiring Employees

Dealing with employees who abuse drugs is very costly and frustrating. If only you could slow down the abuse, let alone stop it, you’d feel more in charge, knowing you are doing the right thing: The right thing for your company or other organization, not to mention the right thing for the good of society.

There are ways to screen potential employees in the original job interview as well give support to existing employees when it comes to minimizing drug abuse.

There is much you can do, especially if you are in charge of Human Relations, and at a low cost, too. It all centers upon EDUCATION. For every one of us to slow down the use of illegal drugs, we must all take ownership of the growing problem of drug addictions and abuse. We must, each of us, confront the problem in our own way. We can no longer fool ourselves into thinking that “it’s not my problem. It’s the problem of the schools, the police, the medical emergency community.”

Wrong. It’s our problem and those of you who work with employee hiring and support are in an excellent position to effectively control the presence of illegal drugs in your office, factory, or other business organization.

You already know how costly the problems of drug abuse and addictions are to your firm. You are stressed because employees don’t show up for work or are late Or how they are not focused on their duties and so cause dangerous accidents while operating machinery or vehicles. Then, too, there’s the limited ability to think creatively to make production goals easier to achieve, because their brains cannot process data as swiftly as they should.

But you can tighten up the new-hire process and continued employee support by offering your employees and potential employees some basic facts about illegal street drugs. And the tool you can easily use are several easily-understood booklets that lay out the facts of how street drugs destroy the minds and bodies of users.The booklets show in simply understood text, drawings, and photographs how drug residues stay in the fatty tissues of the body. And, if untreated, that drug residue stays in there for a lifetime.

The printed booklets also punch holes in such myths as “a little marijuana won’t hurt you.” The truth is that it will hurt both the mind and the body of the user because it drains the body of vitamins and minerals that it needs and also affects the nervous system, causing negative changes and even numbness. The fact is that marijuana smoke contains 400 chemicals and that 60 of these cause cancer.

But the booklets are not confined to pot-smoking alone. They deal with such drugs as ecstasy, cocaine, heroin, meth, and also alcohol. Ecstasy, for example, increases body temperatures to dangerous levels that can stop a beating heart. Additionally, it damages brain cells and so limits memory.

Of course, in all of this, there are extreme mood swings that bring about family violence, lack of motivation, depression of learning abilities, poverty, crime, and even jail-time. The entire scene is, indeed, sad.

The booklets also help set up role-model situations in which the readers can practice what to say when a drug-pusher comes along with his or her false messages. The readers can answer, “No thanks. I don’t want any part of them,” and say it with conviction and confidence.

As readers are steeped in the true facts of drug abuse, they become more armed then ever to ward off the enticing messages of those who are bent in spreading their falsities.

Perhaps you are in a business that tends to attract persons with backgrounds that include drug use and so you live with this situation every day. It behooves you to offer some leadership to assist people to overcome their problems, because a healthier workforce is a more productive workforce. And that leads to a smoother running company and more bottom line profits.