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The scourge of addiction crosses all political and social lines.  Still, many do not talk about it.  Recently the founder of a grief site called GRASP  appeared on the conservative Bill O’Reilly Show.  The topic relates to drug use and addiction.  It touched a difficult and  profound debate that impacts thousands of young people.  I talk about it in a piece just posted on dadonfire.net.  So why does this remind me of Bill Williams.  Well,  many members of the site GRASP know what drug addiction means to their family and how that led to the loss of a child and what may stop the carnage.  So, Bill Williams is appearing on Larry G’s  Prescription Radio Show, Tuesday night June 18th 5-7PM (EST) to talk profoundly about his experience with loss in honor of his son.   Check out Bill William’s  blog for more detailed information.   You can read his story in  Ending the Secrecy of a Child’s Addiction – NYTimes.com.

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Drug Abuse eventually turns  to drug addiction if not checked early enough.  Drug use in teens is growing faster than the we can stop it.  Why kids even start is a tough question.  We do know that opiate based prescription drugs are a big issue and are often abused by kids.  OxyContin, Oxycodone, Hyrdocodone, Lorcet, Lortab, Percodan, Typlox, Precocet, Vicodin, Darvocet, and on and on….all have the potential to be the perfect storm for heroin addiction.   Almost every middle class heroin addict under 21 started out of someone’smedicine cabinet. Read about a mothers crusade after losing her son in “Mom Pushes For Reform” A piece by Dale Wetzel talks about  kids and prescription drugs in “Youth prescription drug abuse on the rise”. The website PARENTS, The Anti Drug understanding the  signs explains what to do about it; and basic good information. See drug test links in the sidebar.  Links courtesy of Mary.

Black Tar is a perfect storm for kids and adults alike getting hooked on pain pills.  As the much higher priced oxycontin continues to saturate suburban streets, black tar use is exploding.  Narco-traffickers know this and target middle American pill heads with cunning door to door delivery of cheap heroin.  Listen to Diane Sawyer of ABC News urgently report this growing epidemic in “Heroin in the Heartland” and read about yet another  huge Pittsburg Heroin Ring Bust over this past weekend.   Links by Keith.

Ron G. wrote the “7 Truths About My Addict That Took Five Years To Learn” as a resonating piece for the Partnership for a Drug-Free America in their blog, INTERVENE.  These  truths should hit home with every parent of an addict.

Teenage Addiction Epidemic Documentary to air October 12, 2011 on PBS-KVIE

The primary mission of Pathway to Prevention is the prevention and early intervention of teenage drug and alcohol addiction.  A secondary goal of Pathway to Prevention is to help fund rehabilitation.  View the trailer

CASAColumbia.org: News Room: New CASA Report Finds Adolescent Substance Use at Epidemic Levels.

The study looks at how American culture increases the risk that teens will use addictive substances and how the messages sent by adults, and glamorized by the tobacco and alcohol industries and the media, normalize substance use and undermine the health and futures of our teens.

We are talking about the origin of drug addiction and knocking on deaths door all the way down this dangerous road.  Kids flirt with cheap highs as young as 9.   Often something is missing at home and the choices a kid makes paves the way to drug and alcohol abuse.  Years can pass while parents miss or deny the signs of drug abuse.  Inhalants ranging from a simple “dust off” computer cleaner to a wide range of aerosol, glue and fuel huffing is a common start.   Websites promote parental involvement as the deterrent.  See The National Inhalant Prevention CoalitionDrug and Alcohol Scene and Parents: The Anti Drug.  This is all great!  Talk to your kids! …while you still can.   Kids that don’t get the right attention  probably don’t have two fully conscious parents working together.  Even if we are half conscious to the fact, kids find ways to get high.   The medicine cabinet is another source of opportunity.  Many don’t realize that addiction to street opiates starts with the abuse of legal opiate based drugs.  Keep  prescriptions secure and monitor the pain medication a doctor prescribes for your kids injury.  Statistics indicate that in 2009, 8 million serious drug addicts, whom were kids have slipped through the cracks.  Some are still kids.  We still deal with them.  Our communities deal with them.  By then its tough love.  If that doesn’t work, the tough love they will get on the streets is brutal.  Dadonfire supports a world of recovery.  links by M. Slivinski.

I believe: an inspirational video by Timothy Shoemaker.  Click Here

OxyContin and the Opium Epidemic of the 21st Century.  Larry G. of Prescription Addiction Radio wrote this piece early in 2009 to bring attention to the epidemic sweeping America; quite frequently culminating in street heroin addiction.  Its not about responsible use of pain medication.  Its about kids dying.  A dozen young people died just in the NW part of Tucson this year!  Evan Cueto was the 3rd overdose death at Canada Del Oro High School in just 3 months into 2009.  Many Blessings to his family.  This is an epidemic.  If it were a terrorist incident, it would be all over the news.  The death toll of opiate overdose barely gets print.  Why  is America silent?  The carnage won’t end without communities demanding it stop.  Opiate Addiction is a serious illness and is treatable if addicts want it and have an accessible support network behind them.   Current estimates of opiate addiction in America is roughly 2 million and growing.  100,000 may die.  The writing is on the wall.  Parents can start by educating themselves.  Time to Act.

The frustration of a parent dealing with a teen and drugs is well known.  Here is a PDF  report that might help :  Adolescent Brain Development and Drug Abuse.   To make matters worse, 5 million adolescents suffer from clinical depression and 70% are undiagnosed.  The numbers for drug & alcohol abuse are worse.; 10% of the  1.4 million American teens with SUD get treatment…” read the article here.   Courtesy of  “The Drug and Alcohol Scene”

Statistically, two years goes by before a parent discovers their child is an addict.  Common pain killers in the average medicine cabinet are opiate based, and young prescription drug abusers unable to escape the clutches of addiction eventually turn to street heroin for its affordability and availability.  By then it’s horribly impacting on families and communities.  Best for folks to educate themselves.  Here are some resources:  Time to ActNot My Kid • Clear ChoicesParents: The Anti Drug • Adolescent Services Chances are if something doesn’t feel right, well, it probably isn’t.  Opiate based drugs are indiscriminate killers.  Not long ago one promising young Chandler, Arizona athlete played around with pain killers too long.  Drifting into heroin addiction, he met a tragic fate at age 17.   Links by Mary Slivinski

Dr. Drew Pinsky has earned  somewhat of a reputation to speak out on treatment, enabling, etc.   Back in 2004, in fact, he wrote an excellent book on the subject.  This past week however,  Dr. Drew caught flack in publicly proclaiming that Lindsy Lohan’s parent’s need to go to the wall in:  If I Were Lindsay Lohan’s Father I Would Go to Any Lengths to Get Her Into Treatment. You may recall the recent tragic loss of Casey Johnson and Corey Haim. They were both peer celebrities who had illegal prescriptions at their fingertips and may be alive today, had intervention took place.  In context to the Dr. Drew piece, “any lengths” really implied having your addict jailed, even if one had to illegally plant drugs on them.   Addicts do have rights and a  big decision to make.  Recovered addicts with previous jail experience have sometimes referred to jail as a “rescue”.   It is not always the worst thing that can happen to your addict.  However, a celebrity’s jail experience is not the same as that of a run of the mill addict.  Many jail guards hate addicts not to mention effective treatment in jail is still  rare.  That’s another topic, but Dr. Drew may do all of us more of a favor to go back to the roots of his solid base of knowledge and advocacy for the problem.  There he can really impact America’s issue with drug abuse and addiction in an effective manner, now that he has your attention.   His focus these days is on celebrities and funky radio shows like  Loveline and the content of his input on the subject has to be taken in that context.  What do you think?  Dr. Drew Link by Valerie Allen Public Relations

And the message is… “lock up your drugs”

Drew Pinsky talks on the View and would like parents to lock up their drugs.  It’s a small start.  Listen to Dr. Drew discuss the abuse of Rx pain killers as an “Epidemic”

The Drug Czar is  listening.  “These latest data confirm that we must redouble our efforts to implement a comprehensive, evidence-based approach to preventing and treating drug use,” Gil Kerlikowske, Director, ONDCP. He is talking about a new survey showing kids using a little less methamphetamine and binge alcohol, more pot, and more ADHD type drugs.  Survey shows kids using more opiate based  prescription pain killers which can lead to cheaper heroin use, which is also risingRead Dave Goodman’s piece about the survey. Read “Kids and Drugs” for solutions.  Survey link by John B.

Young people are abusing medications to get high and families don’t know enough.  Young drug abusers do not understand the dangers.  Here is a valuable PDF document by the D.E.A. that provides answers:  Prescription for Disaster, How Teens Abuse Medicine.

October is National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month and presents an opportunity to promote community involvement to educate parents about the dangers of medicine abuse among teens.  When parents in your community think about protecting teens from drugs, they usually think of illicit street drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, and heroin.  Today’s teens are abusing prescription drugs more than any illicit drug except marijuana.¹ Read their website here which is rich with links. Links by Mary Slivinski

Beautiful Boy – a father’s journey through his son’s addiction.   David Sheff writes about his son’s addiction and his own journey… “Beyond the visceral torture of helplessly watching Nic, his adolescent son, descend deep into the rabbit hole of addiction, Sheff confesses to the ubiquitous parental habit of second-guessing every decision he has made throughout Nic’s life…”   David’s son, Nick, does, by grace, recover and Nick goes on to write his own book “Tweek” about his methamphetamine addiction.  See the above links for details about both books

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