Stories about: teen substance abuse

'Fake drugs' pose real threats

A host of marijuana like substances are legal and widely available in the US
A host of marijuana like substances are legal and widely available in the US

K2. Spice. Zohai. Genie. Have you heard your kids using any of these words lately? If so, they may be smoking a legal, herbal “incense,” commonly misused as a marijuana substitute.

When inhaled, the products produce a similar experience to smoking marijuana and are available at tobacco and head shops for roughly the same price as their street drug equivalent. But unlike pot, these “herbal supplements” are currently legal in 45 states and are untraceable by tests designed to detect cannabis, making their use easy to conceal.

“The main problem with K2, which is similar to problems we saw in the 1980s with designer drugs, is people have been able to alter the molecules of illegal drugs just enough to create a substance that replicates the effects of the drugs, without breaking the law,” says Sharon Levy, MD, MPH, director of Children’s Hospital Boston’s Adolescent Substance Abuse Program. “But legal or not, they’re still psychoactive substances and carry a lot of the same risks.”

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Prom safety: is it ok to search my teen's room if I'm looking for drugs?

In an effort to promote a safe prom season, John Knight, MD, director of Children’s Hospital Boston’s Center for Adolescent Substance Abuse Research(CeASAR) launched Teen-safe.org, a website that explains the medical and social dangers of underage drinking. Here Knight discusses if and when you should search your teen’s room for contraband.

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Prom safety: How do I deal with a teen who comes home drunk?

A recent NPR program noted the influence parents had over their children’s alcohol and drug use, and suggested a relaxed stance on underage drinking can be far more detrimental than many people may realize. The story quoted data from a Pennsylvania State University researcher whose findings mirror the sentiments of John Knight, MD, director of Children’s Hospital Boston’s Center for Adolescent Substance Abuse Research(CeASAR), who has spoken out against this practice before.

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Prom safety: can I trust other parents to keep prom night sleepovers safe?

In an effort to promote a safe prom season, John Knight, MD, director of Children’s Hospital Boston’s Center for Adolescent Substance Abuse Research(CeASAR) launched Teen-safe.org, a website that explains the medical and social dangers of underage drinking. Here Knight discusses how parents can ensure their teen is safe at a prom night sleepover.

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