College offers most freshmen an exciting new life that allows students to finally be free from parental control. Often a student’s initial interpretation of college life is that there will be freedom to explore in a number of activities that were not permitted to them when they were in high school. Sometimes these activities could involve going to parties where there are drugs and alcohol. The mere thought of this undoubtedly can keep parents up all night. If you have a child going away to college, you know what I’m talking about.
According to the U.S. Department of Education, 35% of the freshmen population will comprise the bulk of new drug users and potential drug abusers on college campuses nationwide.
1. Alcohol – Alcohol, wine and beer are the widest used controlled substance consumed on college campuses. The most prominent effect of alcohol is dependence and according to national statistics 15% of college freshmen are alcoholics or enrolled in an AA program after completing their freshman year.
2. Marijuana or Mary Jane, which is also referred to as a blunt, weed, herb, bud and chronic is considered to be the second most readily used drug on college campuses. Aside from alcohol, nearly 65% of student drug abusers smoke or otherwise imbibe in marijuana. Side effects include blood-shot/glassy eyes, dry mouth or cotton mouth, increased appetite (munchies) and loss of coordination.
3. Ecstasy is a man-made pill that emits both psychedelic and stimulant effects. Ecstasy is usually mixed with other drugs like caffeine or amphetamines. The pure form of ecstasy is called Molly, which is popular among college kids! Even pop artists are singing about Molly in their songs. Ecstasy lasts four to six hours. The effects can include teeth clenching, muscle tension, confusion, depression, anxiety, sleeplessness and extreme paranoia. One of the greatest risks with “Molly” is dehydration. The body temperature gets too high and people die or get heart and kidney damage. “Molly” also damages your brain so you cannot think and it can cause memory loss.
4. Adderall is a drug that has exploded on college campuses! Its known as the “study drug” which causes students to stay awake and helps them to focus on what they are studying. Federal studies show as many as one in three college students frequently use Adderall, especially when cramming for exams. Adderall abuse can lead to serious health issues like depression, anxiety and psychosis. Studies have also shown that college students who use Adderall with a valid prescription more often engage in binge drinking and experiment with other drugs.
So parents pay attention. As a bonus – look below at some often used “slang” names for various drugs, and if you hear your child talk about “Molly” – chances are its not a person.
“Slang” names for common drugs used by college students
Alcohol – Booze, brews, sauce, hard stuff
Cocaine – Coke, snow, blow, white powder
Dextromethorphan (DXM) – Dex, dexing, red devils, DM, robo, robotripping
Ecstasy – Molly, love drug, C, XTC, E
LSD – Acid, mellow yellow, Lucy in the sky with diamonds
PCP – Angel dust, wack, rocket fuel, embalming fluid, ozone, killer weed
Heroin – Smack, junk, thunder, H, hell dust
Ketamine – Vitamin K, Special K, K, breakfast cereal, kat
Marijuana – Grass, pot, weed, Mary Jane, THC, dope, ganga
Methamphetamines – Meth, crystal meth, speed, ice, chalk, crank, black beauties, uppers
Prescription medications – Trail mix, smurf, vic, xbrs
Ritalin – Kibbles & bits, pineapple
Rohypnol – Date rape drug, roaches, roofies, roche, forget pill, R-2
In recognition of National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month, the topic of prescription drug abuse is extremely relevant. Prescription drug abuse
is when someone takes a medication that was prescribed for someone else or takes their own prescription in a way not intended by a doctor or for a different reason—like to get high.
Parents need to be aware that all prescription drugs in their medicine cabinet can be abused. Despite the fact that many of these medications below do not appear to be abused by teens, they may try anyway and become sick or even overdose.
Top 10 Most Prescribed Drugs In America:
#1 Synthroid 22.6 Million Prescriptions Are Filled Every Month in America – Synthroid is used to treat an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism). It replaces or provides more thyroid hormone, which is normally produced by the thyroid gland.
#2 Crestor 22.5 Million Prescriptions Are Filled Every Month in America – Crestor is used along with a proper diet to help lower “bad” cholesterol and fats (LDL), triglycerides and raise “good” cholesterol (HDL) in the blood.
#3 Nexium 18.6 Million Prescriptions Are Filled Every Month in America – Nexium is used to treat certain stomach and esophagus problems (such as acid reflux, ulcers). It works by decreasing the amount of acid you stomach makes and relieves symptoms such as heartburn, difficulty swallowing and persistent cough.
#4 Ventolin HFA 17.5 Million Prescriptions Are Filled Every Month in America – Ventolin HFA (albuterol) is used to prevent and treat wheezing and shortness of breath caused by breathing problems (such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease).
#5 Advair Diskas 15.0 Million Prescriptions Are Filled Every Month in America – Advair Diskas is used to control and prevent symptoms (wheezing and shortness of breath) caused by asthma or ongoing lung disease.
#6 Diovan – 11.4 Million Prescriptions Are Filled Every Month in America – Diovan is used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension) and heart failure. It is also used to improve the chance of living longer after a heart attack.
#7 Lantus Solostar – 10.1 Million Prescriptions Are Filled Every Month in America – Lantus Solostar is used along with a proper diet and exercise program to control high blood sugar and used in people with type 1 (insulin-dependent) or type 2 diabetes.
#8 Cymbalta – 10.0 Million Prescriptions Are Filled Every Month in America – Cymbalta is used to treat depression and anxiety.
#9 Vyvanse 10.0 – Million Prescriptions Are Filled Every Month in America – Vyvanse is used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) as part of a total treatment plan, including psychological, social, and other treatments.
#10 Lyrica 9.6 – Million Prescriptions are filled every month in America – Lyrica is used to treat pain caused by nerve damage due to diabetes or to shingles (herpes zoster) infection and is also used to treat pain in people with fibromyalgia.
Resource: Research Firm IMS Health
With Stomp out Bullying day around the corner – October 6th – our Inspirations columnist, Jill Erickson, thought it would be topical to continue to write about anti-bullying.
If your parent “antennas” are suspecting your child is being bullied, by all means – take the situation seriously.
13 anti bullying measures parents should take
Calm, Loving, Support – When your child or teen is telling you about being bullied for the first time it is important to remain calm. Listen in a loving way and support their feelings.
Tell them it is not their fault – Remind your child or teen that he or she isn’t to blame for being bullied.
Learn about the situation – Ask your child who is bullying them. Get names. How are they being bullied? What are they actually doing to your son or daughter.
Be a detective – Get details from your child, such as where is this bullying taking place. Is it before school (at the bus stop, on the bus, walking or riding their bicycle to school), during school (restroom, hallway, standing in line, at lunch, locker, locker room or after school walking home or taking the bus.
Teach your child how to respond – By all means make it clear to them not to retaliate by fighting back against the bully unless provided they are in a life-threatening situation. Your child might try walking away to avoid the bully or tell the bully to leave him alone.
Teach your child the buddy system – Encourage him or her to always seek out someone to walk, eat lunch, or ride the bus with. You and your child can compile a list of friends in and out of school that he or she can hang out with. You may be surprised who you or your child knows that can help him implement the buddy system.
Encourage him or her to report it – Tell your teen or child to consult with an adult as soon as the altercation takes place. They can talk to a teacher, school counselor, school officer, nurse, neighbor, or friend. You have to move fast because bullying can escalate quickly, according to Healthy Kids. By reporting each and every bully attempt will bring attention to the problem front and center. The bully may realize that its not worth his or her time or effort to deal with the constant trouble he finds himself or herself getting into.
Record the details – Write down the details – the date, who was involved and what specifically happened. Save screenshots, emails and texts. Take photos of physical injury/injuries and damages to personal property. Record the facts as objectively as possible.
Technology is your friend – Talk to your child about technology. Make sure you know how your child is using the Internet, social media platforms, or his/her cell phone to interact with others. If your child is being cyberbullied, don’t automatically take their electronic privileges away. Your actions could prevent your child from telling you about a future incident. Likewise, tell your child not to respond to cyberbullying. If possible, use software to block the cyberbully.
Contact the authorities – Seek help from your child’s principal, teacher or the school guidance counselor. Report cyber-bullying to Internet and cellphone service providers or websites. If your child has been physically attacked or otherwise threatened with harm, talk to school officials and call the police. If the bullying has escalated to the point where police are involved be sure to get a detailed copy of police report with a report number and the officers name and badge number.
Ask your child’s school office for a copy of Bullying Policy – Find out how teachers and staff members are obligated to respond to known or suspected bullying incidents. When you notify the school of suspected bullying, make sure you obtain a copy of the report before you leave the school property. Find out how bullying is addressed in the school’s curriculum
Get medical attention if needed – If your child has been injured or traumatized by continued bullying, consult a mental health provider or physician. You might also consider talking to an attorney.
Thank them – If you are lucky enough to have them tell you they are being bullied, acknowledge their sincerity and thank your child for confiding in you.
Finally, let’s work together to STOMP OUT BULLYING
The biggest, most intimidating kid at school, with the strongest fists and the most aggressive personality is no longer the stereotypical school-yard bully. They now come in all shapes and sizes. However, the negative effects of victimization from a bully are still the same – with kids falling into depression, social withdrawal, physical injury, addiction, self-harm and yes even suicide.
Signs to watch out for:
- Unexplained injuries – Look for bruises, scratches or cuts – one-tenth of bullied students admit to being spit on, pushed, shoved, or tripped by another student.
- Missing or destroyed personal items – Your child is returning home from school or a friends house with lost or vandalized electronic gadgets, toys, jewelry, or money.
- Changes in appetite – Your son or daughter is hungry when arriving home without an explanation, or loses their appetite out of the blue.
- Frequent sick days – The U.S. Department of Justice and Education found in a 2011 ‘Indicators of School Crime and Safety’ survey that 5 percent of 12-18 year-old children and teens admitted to missing school due to intimidation by another student.
- Drop in grades – There’s more than meets the eye when a student suddenly and without explanation, has a sudden drop in grades or loses interest in school, sports/hobbies, and social groups that they were once excited about.
- Isolation – If your typically outgoing son or daughter seems suddenly withdrawn from a close group of friends or loses interest in personal relationship(s).
- Tendency to self-harm – Victims of bullying have a propensity to self harm due to a feeling of worthlessness – i.e., cutting arms and/or legs, pulling out their hair, and even attempting suicide.
- Avoidance – If your child is skipping classes, missing the bus on purpose and asking for a ride to school, walking in a different route to and from school, or asking to change schools altogether, there is an issue. If they refuse to talk about it to you, that’s another red flag.
Don’t overlook the possibility that your son or daughter is a victim of bullying. Listen to your child and ask questions. Talk to the school counselor. Speak to his or her friends to see if anything is wrong.
You might be surprised what they say. Your child is your responsibility and loving them is not enough. You need to protect them!
Join us on October 6th and wear a blue shirt.
Help Stop Bullying and Cyber bullying. October is National Bullying Prevention Month. Join us, show your support, wear a blue shirt on October 6, 2014. Definition of the word “Bully”: a person who is habitually cruel or overbearing to others. It also says–antagonizer, browbeater, bulldozer, coercer, intimidator, oppressor, persecutor, rascal, tease, tormenter-all these done on a regular, continual basis.
Bullying Statistics 2014 and recent bullying percentages: There is no doubt that bullying is a problem in U.S. schools but just how much of a problem is it? The latest bullying statistics of 2014 reflect bullying in “real life” as well as cyber bullying. The numbers related to any bullying statistic are both shocking and disheartening. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (DHHS) anti-bullying website Stopbullying.gov, some bullying actions are considered criminal, such as harassment or hazing; but “bullying” alone is not illegal. And recent news stories abound with tales of cyber bullying – where the target is harassed through social media or other technology – that have unfortunately resulted in victims’ suicides. The majority of bullying still takes place at school; 1 in 3 U.S. students say they have been bullies at school, according to the DHHS.
Don’t let your loved one become a shocking number in a bullying statistic. Remember statistics on bullying point to a real problem that must be addressed to change things.