Is your child being bullied?

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.origin 2513823044 195x300 Is your child being bullied?

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  • Isolation – If your typically outgoing son or daughter seems suddenly withdrawn from a close group of friends or loses interest in personal relationship(s).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!

Anti Bullying Rally Coming up

Join us on October 6th and wear a blue shirt.

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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.

Military not immune to drug and alcohol abuse

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Our veterans and their families have earned our respect and deserve our support as a result of long and multiple deployments, exposure to combat, physical injuries, an increase in post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and traumatic brain injury (TBI). And our support has extended into the alcohol or drug abuse area as well as a result of the extreme stressful events experienced while serving one, two, or three military tours.

Addressing the Problem:

A 2012 report prepared by the Department of Defense (DOD) by the Institute of Medicine  recommended ways of addressing the problem of substance use in the military, including increasing the use of evidence-based prevention and treatment interventions and expanding access to care.  The report recommends broadening insurance coverage to include effective outpatient treatments and better equipping healthcare providers to recognize and screen for substance use problems so they can refer patients to appropriate, evidence-based treatment when needed.  It also recommends measures like limiting access to alcohol on military bases.
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Branches of the military have already taken steps to curb prescription drug abuse.  The Army, for example, has implemented changes that include limiting the duration of prescriptions for opioid pain relievers to 6 months and having a pharmacist monitor a soldier’s medications when multiple prescriptions are being used.

Saving Lives:

Fortunately, as a result of the help and support of the military, veterans and those who work in the field of alcoholism and addiction, more veterans of the war in Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam and their families are living lives in long-term recovery than at any point in our history.
Source:  NIDA, Drugabuse.org

Violent video games linked to risk of crime, alcohol abuse

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A US study reports violent video games glorifying antisocial characters could increase teenage gamer’s risk of criminal and other risky behavior like smoking and alcohol use.  These adult rated games also affect teens self-image.
A previous Dartmouth study published in 2012 had already found that such video games could incite teens to drive carelessly. Other studies have linked violent videogames to adolescent aggressiveness and violence.  In
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Jill Erickson

fact, youths who play these types of video games may identify themselves with the antisocial protagonists they feature.

But this latest study is important because it is the first to suggest that possible effects of violent videogames go well beyond violence to apply to substance use, risky driving, and risk-taking sexual behavior.
Among the factors they examined were playing three violent videogames glorifying violence – “Grand Theft Auto”, “Manhunt”, and “Spiderman”.
Source: Dartmouth College-Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
Dartmouth Professor of Pediatrics James Sargent

Light alcohol drinking less healthy than originally thought

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A glass or two of booze is good for your heart, according to long-standing medical advice that drinkers are often fond of citing.

Reducing even light consumption of alcohol will not only improve your chances against coronary heart disease, but also help you lose weight and reduce high blood pressure according to a British Medical Journal study .

Writing in the British Medical Journal, researchers carried out an overview of 50 published studies on the drinking habits and health of more than 260,000 people of European descent. They focused on those with a key variant of a gene called ADH1B.

Previous research has found that a single change in the DNA code in this gene makes people less sensitive to drink and less at risk from alcoholism.

The new study discovered that individuals with the variant drank 17-percent fewer units of alcohol per week and were 78-percent less likely to binge-drink that those without it. They also had a 10-percent lower risk of coronary heart disease and enjoyed lower systolic blood pressure and body mass index (BMI).

“This suggests that reduction of alcohol consumption, even for light to moderate drinkers, is beneficial for cardiovascular health”, the study contended.