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USE OF ILLICIT DRUGS ON THE RISE

Use of illicit drugs, including marijuana, has been rising steadily among college-aged young adults. In addition, non-medical use of stimulants, including Adderall and Ritalin, has more than doubled in the past few years. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) has created a new section on its website featuring the most recent Monitoring the Future (MTF) national survey results on drug use among students enrolled full time in a 2- or 4-year college as well as young people of the same age group not attending college. It also includes links of interest to parents, educators, dorm supervisors, counselors, clinicians and researchers who work with this age group. Additional resources include infographics, statistics and trends, treatment guides, information about careers in addiction science as well as related videos, publications, articles, and other relevant materials. For more information on NIDA’s College-Age and Young Adults web page, go to: http://www.drugabuse.gov/related-topics/college-age-young-adults For more information on...
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Adolescent Pot Use Leaves Lasting Mental Deficits; Developing Brain Susceptible to Lasting Damage from Exposure to Marijuana

Lasting Mental Deficits For Adolescent Pot Users[caption id="attachment_3332" align="alignright" width="300"] ScienceDaily (Aug. 27, 2012) — The persistent, dependent use of marijuana before age 18 has been shown to cause lasting harm to a person's intelligence, attention and memory, according to an international research team.  ScienceDaily (Aug. 27, 2012) — The persistent, dependent use of marijuana before age 18 has been shown to cause lasting harm to a person's intelligence, attention and memory, according to an international research team. Among a long-range study cohort of more than 1,000 New Zealanders, individuals who started using cannabis in adolescence and used it for years afterward showed an average decline in IQ of 8 points when their age 13 and age 38 IQ tests were compared. Quitting pot did not appear to reverse the loss either, said lead researcher Madeline Meier, a post-doctoral researcher at Duke University. The results appear online Aug. 27 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of...
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Synthetic Drug users and treatment

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 17, 2012 -- What many are beginning to notice lately is that synthetic drugs are rising in the ranks as far as dependency and medical issues are concerned. The days of cocaine and heroin being the bad guys on the block are changing as technology and the population rises. There are many things that could be accredited to the influx of drug addiction in the last decade, including the economy hardships thousands are facing. But who could have imagined that bath salts and synthetic marijuana would turn up on the list of dangerous psychoactive drugs? Yet it’s true. Countless emergency care facilities across the nation are facing more and more cases of synthetic drug abuse. A multitude of these cases have yielded violent outbursts, and aggressive and abusive behaviors. Health care professionals and law enforcement have made note of this side effect to be prevalent in encounters....
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DA: Bath salts suspected in Hawley head-gnawing attack

By Denis J. O’Malley The Times-Tribune, Scranton September 14, 2012 Authorities suspect the Doylestown man who allegedly gnawed on a woman’s head in Hawley after stripping his clothes and jumping from a second-story window on Friday may have been under the influence of bath salts. Richard Cimino Jr., 20, of Doylestown, had “allegedly” taken bath salts before the early morning incident Friday, said Wayne County District Attorney Janine Edwards, though that has not yet been confirmed by medical testing. Cimino remains in Geisinger Community Medical Center in Scranton recovering from injuries suffered when he jumped from the second-floor window of a vacant home on Hudson Street in Hawley on Friday, after he stripped down to his underwear and unsuccessfully tried to break into another nearby home. By the time he entered the vacant home at 521 Hudson St., Cimino had also taken off his underpants, state police said. After the jump,...
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13 Sobering Facts About Teen Substance Abuse

13 Sobering Facts About Teen Substance Abuse A new report finds that 76 percent of high school students have used tobacco, alcohol, marijuana, and other drugs, and one-fifth of them may be addicted. These alarming figures highlight the urgent need for parents and communities to help troubled teens. Teen substance use is an epidemic of greater proportions than depression, bullying, and obesity, according to a new report by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University in New York City. CASA interviewed more than 2,500 high school students, parents, and school personnel, analyzed thousands of studies, and interviewed 50 leading experts in a broad range of fields to produce the comprehensive report, which unearthed some shocking statistics. Among the findings: While the percentage of teens who smoke, drink, or use illegal drugs has declined since 1999, the number of youths who still do so is dangerously high....
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Up to 20,000 marijuana plants found in Cherokee County

POSTED: Friday, August 31, 2012 - 9:59am Nicole Underwood Assistant News Director/ KETK News   CHEROKEE COUNTY — Marijuana plants up to 8 feet tall have been found within four patches of plants near the Angelina River, in eastern Cherokee County. The plants were found on Thursday, August 30th. Cherokee County investigators, DPS narcotics officers, DEA agents and the Texas National Guard participated in the search for the fields. During the morning and early afternoon, two helicopter crews flew over heavily wooded areas searching for the fields. The investigation is part of the Domestic Marijuana Eradication Program, or DME, which is dedicated to the eradication of domestically grown marijuana. Around 2:45pm on Thursday, helicopter crews spotted a possible marijuana site near the Angelina River, about 1.5 miles south of FM 343, on the eastern border of Cherokee County. Ground crews were alerted to the patch, and investigated the area. They found a very large...
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Parents Frequently Asked Questions About Drug Testing in Schools

What is drug testing? Some schools, hospitals, or places of employment conduct drug testing. There are a number of ways this can be done, including: pre-employment testing, random testing, reasonable suspicion/cause testing, post-accident testing, return to duty testing, and follow-up testing. This usually involves collecting urine samples to test for drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines, PCP, and opiates. Following models established in the workplace, some schools have initiated random drug testing and/or reasonable suspicion/cause testing. During random testing schools select, using a random process (like flipping a coin), one or more individuals from the student population to undergo drug testing. Currently, random drug testing can only be conducted among students who participate in competitive extracurricular activities. Reasonable suspicion/cause testing involves a school requiring a student to provide a urine specimen when there is sufficient evidence to suggest that the student may have used an illicit substance. Typically, this involves...
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Heavy Marijuana Use in Teen Years May Lower IQ Later

Teens who start smoking marijuana regularly experience what appear to be permanent declines in their IQs and other aspects of mental function, new research finds. The study included information on more than 1,000 people born in New Zealand in 1972-1973. Participants took IQ and other mental functioning tests at age 13 -- before any had started smoking marijuana -- and then again at age 38. Every few years, starting at age 18, participants were also asked about their use of marijuana and assessed for marijuana dependence. Marijuana dependence is defined as someone who feels they need to smoke more and more marijuana to get the same effect, who has tried to quit but can't or who keeps using even though the habit is causing them problems, such as with their health, family, work or school. About 5% reported using marijuana more than once a week before age 18 or were considered...
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Growing Number of Teens Drinking, Taking Drugs During School

Ninety percent of American high school students report that some of their classmates are using illicit drugs, including alcohol and tobacco, during the school day, a new survey found. When asked to estimate how many were involved, these teens reported that about 17 percent of students -- roughly 2.8 million -- are abusing drugs during the school day, according to the survey. "The findings are alarming but not surprising," said Bruce Goldman, director of substance abuse services at Zucker Hillside Hospital, in Glen Oaks, N.Y. "We know that teens abuse alcohol, cannabis, prescription medications. It makes sense that they do it at school where they congregate with their peers. Goldman was not involved with the survey, which was released Wednesday by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University (CASAColumbia), in New York City. The survey is a timely one, coming out soon after a U.S. government study...
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Feds bust a drug ring run from Indiana prisons, meth, heroin, and other drugs

Federal authorities have charged 40 people—including two inmates and a corrections officer—for running a drug ring through three Indiana prisons. According to The Associated Press, the indictment unsealed Wednesday in Indianapolis notes the scheme  involved methamphetamine, heroin and other drugs and also alleges prison guards smuggled cellphones and drugs into prisons. The indictment says that inmates Oscar Perez and Justin Addler, who are in different prisons, made repeated calls to drug dealers in California to arrange for illegal deliveries of drugs to a network of distributors in Indiana, the Indianapolis Star reported. The deliveries were made in person or through the U.S. Postal Service or UPS, the newspaper notes. Perez is serving time for murder and Addler is a convicted drug dealer, according to the AP. Correctional officer John Dobbins is accused of delivering a package containing drugs and a cellphone to an inmate at a third prison in July, according...
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Teens Smoking More Pot, Less Tobacco

Cigarette smoking is out but pot use is in among the nation's teenagers, who also report a higher use of prescription painkillers and a waning perception about the risk of illicit drugs, a federal study on students has found.   As more states move to approve medical marijuana, and pot legalization and decriminalization become more mainstream in the national discussion, teens seem more accepting of pot use, according to a study released Monday by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.   The national survey, "Monitoring the Future," was conducted by the University of Michigan and queried 47,097 students in the eighth, 10th and 12th grades.   It found that one-fifth of seniors—20.6 percent—reported using marijuana in the previous month, up from 18.3 percent in 2006. High school sophomores' pot smoking rose from 13.8 percent in 2008 to 15.9 percent this year, statistics that researchers said should capture the nation's attention.  ...
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Study Finds 'Diverted' Medical Marijuana Use Common Among Teens

MONDAY Aug. 13, 2012 -- Among teens receiving treatment for substance abuse, many have used medical marijuana that was recommended for someone else, also known as "diverted" medical marijuana, a new study has found. The study authors, from the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, Colo., suggest that policy changes are needed to curb the improper use of medical marijuana by young people. In conducting the study, lead author Stacy Salomonsen-Sautel and colleagues questioned 164 teens aged 14 to 18 at two adolescent substance abuse treatment programs in Denver about their use of medical marijuana. The investigators found that nearly 74 percent of the teens used marijuana that was recommended for someone else an average of 50 times. Compared with teens who did not use medical marijuana, those who did began using the drug regularly at a younger age and were also more dependent on marijuana and showed more...
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