From Amazon: There is a host of questions to be considered. Among them: • What are the causes of addictions? • What is the nature of the addiction-prone personality? • What happens physiologically in the brains of addicted people? • How much choice does the addict really have? • Why is the “War on Drugs” a failure and what might be a humane, evidence-based approach to the treatment of severe drug addiction? • What are some of the paths for redeeming addicted minds not dependent on powerful substances–that is, how do we approach the healing of the many behaviour addictions fostered by our culture?
As I was writing a chapter for my new book on drugs and alcohol I came across this amazing book from Joseph Califano. It is called How to Raise a Drug-Free Kid. Well worth the read for all parents looking to address this conversation in your own family.
Description from Amazon-
The highly acclaimed comprehensive guide to getting your child through the formative pre-teen, teen, and college years drug-free—now completely revised and updated.
Nearly every child will be offered drugs or alcohol before graduating high school, and excessive drinking is common at most colleges. But the good news is that a child who gets to age twenty-one without smoking, using illegal drugs, or abusing alcohol or prescription drugs is virtually certain never to do so.
Drawing on more than two decades of research at The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University (CASAColumbia), founder Joseph A. Califano, Jr., presents a clear, common-sense guide to helping kids stay drug-free. All parents dream of a healthy, productive, and fulfilling future for their children; Califano shows which specific actions work and what parents can do to teach, protect, and empower their children to have the greatest chance of making that future come true. Teenagers who learn about the risks of drugs from their parents are twice as likely never to try them, and this book provides the tools parents need to prepare their children for those crucial decision-making moments.
In this revised and updated edition, Califano tackles some of the newest obstacles standing between our kids and a drug-free life—from social media sites and cell phone apps to the explosion in prescription and over-the-counter drug abuse and the increased dangers and addictive power of marijuana. He reveals what teens can’t or won’t tell their parents about their thoughts on drugs and alcohol, and combines the latest research with his discussions with thousands of parents and teens about the challenges that widespread access to drugs and alcohol present, and how parents can instill in their teens the will and skills to choose not to use. Califano’s insightful and lively guide is as readable as it is informative.
Vaping seems to be a huge conversation with teens and parents as I travel. Here is another article talking about the addictive nature of vaping. I always hear people say that vaping is better than inhaling cigarette smoke. Why do we have to inhale anything is usually my response. If you are using a vape to switch from cigarettes I think it is great. Then you should be decreasing and coming off of vape as well.
E-cigarettes are tiny — they look like a pen or flash drive. When someone vapes, there’s no fire, ash or smoky odor. Instead, the devices heat up and vaporize a liquid or solid. And vaping appears to have taken off among young people.
“They specifically use nicotine salts,” Liptzin says. “We have no research that I could find on nicotine salts that are inhaled, because it’s so new.”
Most educators, parents and students “don’t realize how much nicotine is in there, or that there’s even any nicotine,” she says. “That’s what the research tells us.”
“So my biggest concern,” he says, “is, you know, right now I’m puffing, puffing, happy, worry-free, and then in 20 years I’ll have to explain to my kids why I’ve developed popcorn lung — or some new form of lung cancer,” Lavandier says. “Because I didn’t know what the risks were of e-cigarettes. It terrifies me.”
I often find myself talking to teenagers (and even their parents) who are telling me that there are no dangers to vaping. I saw this today and thought I would post it to get some conversation going on this topic.
• Exposure to nicotine is worrisome in teens and young adults because nicotine can be highly addictive. Due to the fact that the brain is undergoing massive changes during the teen years, nicotine use may rewire the brain, making it easier to get hooked on other substances and contribute to problems with concentration, learning and impulse control. • Most vape devices release a number of potentially toxic substances, although exposure is considerably lower than those found in regular cigarettes. • Dependence develops when the body adapts to repeated exposure to vaping. When a person stops vaping, he or she can experience withdrawal symptoms, although likely not as intense as with conventional cigarettes. • Vaping may be increasing risks of smoking. Teens and young adults who vape are almost four times as likely as their non-vaping peers to begin smoking cigarettes. • Injuries and poisonings have resulted from devices exploding and direct exposure to e-liquids. • Long-term studies are needed to evaluate the risks of cancer and respiratory illness, though there is some concern that vaping can cause coughing and wheezing and may exacerbate asthma.
Really interesting documentary on the issues of “purity culture” within the Christian Church. I have seen too much damage when we make virginity an idol as opposed to an ideal. The video is from 2010 but it still worth the watch. Students today have so many questions and we are offering so little education on how to have a Biblical Worldview of healthy sexuality. We need to do a better job as parents, educators, and the church in this conversation.
**language in the video.
Synopsis: The Purity Ball symbolizes a father’s protection over his daughter’s virginity, but how does this reflect in the choices she makes, understanding her sexuality, and knowing her worth as a woman? This documentary examines the effects of Abstinence-Only Programs versus Comprehensive Sex Education in schools and what society can do to help lower teen pregnancies, abortions, and STD’S, as well as poverty and sexual abuse.
“Daddy I Do” shows how teen pregnancy, abortion, poverty, and sexual abuse all trace back to Sex Education in America. Opinions about sex stem from religious views, but it’s up to you, the viewer, to determine whether or not ideologies should decide what’s best for our children and our country. I strongly believe this film has the power to shed light on topics that many Americans are too afraid to address. Knowledge is power, and we need to use that power towards good. I encourage you to see the deeper meaning behind “Daddy I Do”, in hopes of a better tomorrow through positive action.
Another article on the legalization of Cannabis in Canada.
For those who seek a distinction between marijuana and “hard” drugs like opiates and meth, and “soft” drugs like pot, the usual recourse is to liken pot to alcohol. We not only have legal alcohol, but use public dollars to promote its consumption, so why should marijuana be any different? Getting high on a joint is just like getting drunk, so treat it the same.
It’s not, physiologically, but leave that aside and take the argument in the other direction. If you had a society in which alcohol consumption was non-existent, or at least rare, would it be a good idea to try to increase it?
You don’t have to be a priest or police officer or counsellor to know the terrible toll alcohol takes. There are many cultural and practical reasons why the prohibition of alcohol is both unwise and impractical, but that it is legal should not obscure that it does massive damage, often to the most vulnerable. The same goes, by the way, for the casinos and video lottery terminals that the government pushes, to use the apt word, upon vulnerable populations.