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A recent survey from the Partnership for a Drug-Free America shows 40 percent of teens think that prescription drugs are "much safer" than illegal drugs. 

The rise and fall of teenage drug use has been tracked by several organizations over the last couple of decades, and the most recent study from the Partnership for a Drug-Free America shows that prescription drug abuse continues to pervade society. 

The Partnership Attitude Tracking Study, now in its 18th year, showed that four and a half million teenagers (19 percent) report abusing prescription medications to get high. This includes narcotics such as Vicodin and Oxycontin as well as amphetamines like Ritalin and Adderall. The steady rise of prescription drug abuse over the years has come to a point where teenagers are now more likely to abuse legal drugs than illegal ones like cocaine, crack, ecstasy and methamphetamine. 

In a Partnership release announcing the results of the study, CEO Steve Pasierb said, "We have a situation where a widespread and dangerous teen behavior has become normalized and has found its way into our homes." 

Released on May 16th in Washington, D.C., the Partnership study surveyed more than 7,300 teenagers in grades 7-12, and found that 9.4 million of them (40 percent) felt that prescription drugs are "much safer" than illegal drugs. Additional findings showed that 29 percent of teenagers think that painkillers are not addictive. 

Dr. Michael Maves of the American Medical Association acknowledged that prescription drugs, "…can be every bit as dangerous as illegal street drugs.“


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Do you know your drugs..., or at least what drug causes these symptoms?

What drug causes...

In boys and men, reduced sperm production, shrinking of the testicles, impotence, difficulty or pain in urinating, baldness, and irreversible breast enlargement (gynecomastia). In girls and women, development of more masculine characteristics, such as decreased body fat and breast size, deepening of the voice, excessive growth of body hair, and loss of scalp hair, as well as clitoral enlargement. In adolescents of both sexes, premature termination of the adolescent growth spurt, so that for the rest of their lives, abusers remain shorter than they would have been without the drugs. In males and females of all ages, potentially fatal liver cysts and liver cancer; blood clotting, cholesterol changes, and hypertension, each of which can promote heart attack and stroke; and acne. Although not all scientists agree, some interpret available evidence to show that abuse-particularly in high doses-promotes aggression that can manifest itself as fighting, physical and sexual abuse, armed robbery, and property crimes such as burglary and vandalism. Upon stopping, some abusers experience symptoms of depressed mood, fatigue, restlessness, loss of appetite, insomnia, reduced sex drive, headache, muscle and joint pain, and the desire to take more.

Is it …..?

  A. Anabolic Steroids
  B. Barbiturates
  C. Chloral Hydrate
  D. Depressants
  E. Ecstasy (MDMA)

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The most commonly used mushroom or “shroom”, in Oklahoma, is the psilocybin mushroom. It can be found sprouting from “cowpiles” or grown from spores purchased on the internet. While psilocybe are used for religious rituals and by individuals wanting to take a “psychedelic trip”, they are considered a “Class 1” drug and as such, are illegal. Users report an elevated level of connectedness and awareness, but, later, can also experience Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder (HPPD) suffering symptoms that include suicidal behavior, depression and panic attacks. 

Source: Oklahoma Gazette Vol. XXXII No. 18 May 5, 2010