Category Archives: Safety

High schoolers misusing prescription drugs have more than one way to get them

Researchers warn that this could lead to substance abuse issues

By Kristen Dalli

07/18/2019 | ConsumerAffairs | Health News

“A new study from Michigan State University shows that high schoolers have many different sources they can turn to when it comes to obtaining prescription drugs.

While the misuse and abuse of these drugs raises concerns on its own, the team says the findings are also worrisome because the misuse of prescription drugs is often associated with other mental health concerns or substance abuse issues.

“These adolescents are most in need of intervention to address their substance use and any other medical and mental health issues,” said researcher Ty Schepis.

Knowing the numbers
The researchers completed two studies to gain a better understanding of young people’s misuse of prescription drugs.

In the first study, the researchers analyzed over 18,500 high school students to gain insight into their attitudes about drugs and their behaviors around them. The students were specifically asked about stimulants, opioids, and tranquilizers.

Of the students involved in this study, 11 percent reported misusing prescription drugs, with 44 percent of those same students reporting that they had more than one way to get their hands on the drugs when they wanted them. While some opted to take leftover drugs they found in their medicine cabinets, others bought them off of their peers at school.

The second study focused on nearly 104,000 adolescents between the ages of 12 and 17, and the researchers aimed to discover how these young people were securing prescription drugs.

The most common source for drugs in this study was getting them for free from friends or relatives, as this accounted for roughly 33 percent of the participants’ misuse of drugs. Getting an opioid painkiller prescription from a doctor was the second highest source, with 24 percent of participants obtaining drugs this way. Buying drugs from others rounded out the list.

These findings are certainly cause for concern, as having multiple avenues to secure prescription drugs for the wrong reasons has been proven to lead to substance use disorder in over 70 percent of young people.

“The implications from these two studies could not be clearer,” said researcher Sean Esteban McCabe. “Parents, public health experts, and clinicians must rally to address this problem. There is a critical need for clinical workforce training to support clinical and school-based education, screening, prevention, and early intervention.””

Abusing painkillers as a teen could lead to heroin use later in life

Researchers are unsure why this pattern exists

By Kristen Dalli

07/09/2019 | ConsumerAffairs | Health News

In a new study, researchers have discovered that teens are more likely to turn to heroin when they use prescription painkillers to get high.

“Prescription opioids and heroin activate the brain’s pleasure circuit in similar ways,” said researcher Adam Leventhal. “Teens who enjoy the ‘high’ from prescription opioids could be more inclined to seek out other drugs that produce euphoria, including heroin.”

Tracking drug use

The researchers’ primary focus with the study was to see how prescription painkiller use during teenage years impacted potential drug use in later years. To get a gauge of teens’ drug habits over time, the researchers had nearly 3,300 high school freshman complete surveys, which were retaken twice a year through their senior years.

The biggest takeaway from the study was that students who were currently using, or had previously used, prescription painkillers were more likely to turn to heroin by the time they graduated high school.

“Adolescents are sometimes overlooked in the opioid epidemic discussion,” said researcher Lorraine Kelley-Quinn. “The association between nonmedical opioid use and later heroin use in youth is concerning and warrants further research and health policy interventions.”

Prescription painkillers were popular in nearly 600 of the students surveyed throughout their high school experience, and this led to a large portion of students later turning to harder drugs.

Nearly 11 percent of students who reported formerly using prescription opioids and over 17 percent who were currently using the drugs were found to use heroin by the end of high school.

“While we can’t definitively conclude that there is a cause-and-effect relation, there may be something unique about opioid drugs that makes youths vulnerable to trying heroin,” said Leventhal. “The results do not appear to be driven by the tendency of some teens to act out, rebel, or experiment with many types of drugs.”

Protecting young people
A recent study revealed that parents are choosing opioids for their kids when it comes to pain relief, despite knowing other options exist.

Now knowing how prescription opioids can affect teens into early adulthood, these findings shed new light on how future treatment options could be affected.

Moreover, researchers have discovered that today’s children and teens are three times more likely to experience opioid poisoning than they were two decades ago.

Teen crashes in Bird Box challenge


Police say a teenager participating in the latest viral challenge is responsible for a crash on a parkway and will face reckless driving charges.

Friday, January 11, 2019 03:15PM

LAYTON, Utah — Police say a teenager participating in the latest viral challenge is responsible for a crash on Layton Parkway and will face reckless driving charges.

Layton Police tweeted two photos of the crash, which they said occurred Monday. No injuries were reported.

“Bird Box Challenge while driving… predictable result,” the department stated. “This happened on Monday as a result of the driver covering her eyes while driving on Layton Parkway.”

Police said they didn’t learn about the story behind Monday’s crash until Friday. The “Bird Box Challenge” takes its name from a recent Netflix movie in which the characters must remain blindfolded.

Lt. Travis Lyman, Layton Police, said the 17-year-old girl driving the pickup truck was with a 16-year-old boy when she decided to attempt the “Bird Box Challenge” and used a beanie as an impromptu blindfold.

The driver veered into oncoming traffic and struck a passenger car.

“Honestly I’m almost embarrassed to have to say ‘Don’t drive with your eyes covered’ but you know apparently we do have to say that,” Lyman said. “…The stakes are just so high and it’s just such a potentially dangerous thing as it is: to try and do it in that way is inexcusable. It really puts everybody at risk.”

Police are recommending reckless driving charges in the case but it will be up to the County Attorney’s Office to determine what charges, if any, are filed.

Vaping

14-year-old in serious condition after vaping alcohol
2:52 pm
October 23, 2018

PATCH GROVE, WI — A 14-year-old is in serious condition after vaping alcohol.

The Grant County Sheriff’s Office and West Grant EMS responded to River Ridge High School Tuesday morning. The investigation showed the male possibly inhaled alcohol through a vaping device and it caused him to suffer symptoms associated with alcohol poisoning.

The teenager was transported to Crossing Rivers Medical Center and then airlifted to University Hospital in Madison. He’s in serious condition.

The Grant County Sheriff’s Office is still investigating.

700 reasons not to eat a Tide laundry pod!!!!! The social media fad may be even more dangerous than first believed. Age of reason???

https://www.consumeraffairs.com/news/seven-hundred-reasons-not-to-eat-a-tide-laundry-pod-020218.html

“Tide laundry detergent developed a handy way to wash your clothes. Instead of measuring detergent, you simply toss in a prepackaged detergent pod.

For some reason, some person decided to video themselves eating one of these soap pods and put it on social media, daring others to “accept the challenge.” What happened next was predictable. Eating Tide laundry pods became “a thing,” causing doctors and poison control officials to warn of the dangers.

Now the Consumer Wellness Center has put some research behind those warnings. Commissioned by Science.News, the Center conducted a laboratory analysis of a Tide laundry pod and identified 700 unique and potentially dangerous chemicals.

You can find the lengthy list on the Science.News website.

Promoting awareness

Mike Adams, who is lab science director at the Consumer Wellness Center and author of the popular science book “Food Forensics,” says the public — parents especially — need to be aware of what’s in the laundry pods.

“Many of these chemicals pose very real risks to human health as well as aquatic ecosystems,” Adams said.

Tide’s warning label on the product advises consumers to “call your local Poison Control Center or doctor immediately” if the product is swallowed.

“Concentrated detergent pacs can burst if children put them in their mouths or play with them,” the warning label reads. “The liquid inside is harmful if put in mouth, swallowed or in eyes. KEEP PACS OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN.”

Absent from the label

But Adams says the label does not name specific chemicals on the packaging, leading him to believe consumers could be unaware of the potential dangers.

“Given the toxicity of this product when ingested, many consumers are now wondering whether it’s safe to wear those same chemicals on their skin,” said Adams. “An even bigger question is what happens downstream when these chemicals are rinsed out of clothing and flushed away.”

As we reported in 2013, a seven month-old child died after eating a laundry pod, the first known fatality.

Proctor and Gamble CEO David Taylor, whose company makes Tide, says he can’t understand why people are eating his product and he’s not sure what to do about it.

“Ensuring the safety of the people who use our products is fundamental to everything we do at P&G,” Taylor said in a January 22 blog post. “However, even the most stringent standards and protocols, labels, and warnings can’t prevent intentional abuse fueled by poor judgment and the desire for popularity.”

Teen suicide: parents CAN make a difference!

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/faithonthecouch/2018/01/teen-suicide-parents-can-make-difference/#Y0PY8XRr11qmEZGC.99

JANUARY 25, 2018 BY DR. GREG

“There is nothing more painful than losing a child to suicide, and many parents feel powerless to do anything to prevent it except hope that it doesn’t happen. A new study by the University of Cincinnati reveals that parents can play a tremendous role in helping their teens avoid self-harm.

“Parents ask us all the time, ‘What can we do?’” said King, who coordinates UC’s health promotion and education doctoral program and serves as Director of the Center for Prevention Science. “You can tell them you’re proud of them, that they did a good job, get involved with them, and help them with their homework.”

“A key is to ensure that children feel positively connected to their parents and family,” added Vidourek, who serves as Co-Director of the Center for Prevention Science.

The results of the study were startling. In particular, 12 and 13yo children whose parents rarely or never said, “I’m proud of you” were nearly five times more likely to have suicidal thoughts, nearly seven times more likely to formulate a suicide plan and about seven times more likely to attempt suicide than their peers. Similarly, 12- and 13 year olds with parents who rarely or never told them they did a good job or helped them with their homework were at excessively high risk for suicide.

Likewise, 16- and 17-year-olds whose parents rarely or never told the children they are proud of them are about three times more likely to have suicidal thoughts and almost four times more likely to make a suicide plan and attempt suicide than peers whose parents sometimes or often did.

The key, as with many problems associated with kids and teens, is attachment, attachment, attachment. The stronger the emotional bond you have with your children–and more specifically, the stronger the emotional bond your kids feel like they have with you–the more likely it is that your children will choose healthy options for dealing with their problems and avoid more dangerous, and deadly, choices.

For more information on how you can strengthen your emotional bond with your children whether they are toddlers or teens, check out Parenting with Grace: The Catholic Parents’ Guide to Raising (almost) Perfect Kids. Or, contact the Pastoral Solutions Institute to learn more about how our Catholic tele-counseling practice can help you transform your marriage, family, and personal life.”

Teens & laundry pods

http://www.wkow.com/story/37251626/2018/01/12/trending-teens-post-videos-online-of-consuming-detergent-pods

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/tide-pod-challenge-ingesting-detergent-risks/

https://washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2018/01/16/there-were-over-10000-poison-control-calls-for-people-eating-laundry-pods-last-year/

Too much time & money.  Not enough work.  Imho.  They could get started on paying & saving for college, a car, etc., instead of poisoning themselves.  Sports, volunteering to help the less fortunate if one is independently wealth, which is a shame.  The formation earning your own money, paying your own bills provides is priceless.  Or, the military is an outstanding option for young people to serve the nation and communities.  Better to be killed by enemy fire and die a hero to your country, than a useless moron who wasted their young life and poisoned themselves and destroyed the lives of those who cared and loved you most in this life.  May God have mercy on young people and on their foolishness. May He give strength, patience, wisdom, faith, grace, hope, compassion, and gentleness to their guardians.

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of Wisdom.  You shall love the Lord, your God, with your whole mind, heart, and soul.  You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is One. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates.” -Deut 6:4-9

I look to the mountains;
from whence comes my help?
My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.

He will not let you fall;
your protector is always awake.

The protector of Israel
never dozes or sleeps.
The Lord will guard you;
he is by your side to protect you.
The sun will not hurt you during the day,
nor the moon during the night.

The Lord will protect you from all danger;
he will keep you safe.
He will protect you as you come and go
now and forever.

-Psalm 121