Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Drug trends among King County youth

According to the report Drug Trends in the Seattle-King County Area, 2008, of all King County residents who entered substance abuse treatment in 2008, 81% of those who were admitted for alcohol addiction started using alcohol before the age of 18. Ninety-two percent of those who were admitted for marijuana addiction started using marijuana before the age of 18.

The chart below shows youth substance abuse treatment admissions in King County. By far, the primary drug for which youth seek treatment is marijuana, followed by alcohol.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Adolescent brains more sensitive to effects of alcohol

From National Public Radio: Teen Drinking May Cause Irreversible Brain Damage.

For teenagers, the effects of a drunken night out may linger long after the hangover wears off.

A recent study led by neuroscientist Susan Tapert of the University of California, San Diego compared the brain scans of teens who drink heavily with the scans of teens who don't.

Tapert's team found damaged nerve tissue in the brains of teens who drank. The researchers believe this damage negatively affects attentions span in boys, and girls ability to comprehend and interpret visual information.

"First of all, the adolescent brain is still undergoing several maturation processes that render it more vulnerable to some of the effects of substances," Tapert says.

In other words, key areas of the brain are still under construction during the adolescent years, and are more sensitive to the toxic effects of drugs and alcohol.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Monday is Prevention Advocacy Day in Olympia

2010 Prevention Advocacy Day
Monday, January 18, 2010
8:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Olympia, WA

This year's theme: The Prescription for Saving $$ is Prevention!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Social norms campaigns to prevent underage drinking

As Prevention WinS considers including a social norms campaign as part of a Drug Free Communities grant proposal, here is another great example of a campaign being implemented by the SPF-SIG coalition in Kelso, Washington.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Secure Medicine Return Bill

The Secure Medicine Return Bill that has been introduced to the Washington State Legislature provides for the safe collection and disposal of unwanted drugs from residential sources. Environmental organizations and substance abuse prevention advocates have come together in support of this bill. As the rate of youth who abuse prescription drugs rises, this bill is an important preventive measure.