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Modern Youth Drug Abuse Trends

Modern youth drug abuse trends are disturbing in that the substances people are using to get high today can be extremely dangerous. We’re not talking about typical street drugs like heroin, cocaine or meth – we’re talking about a terrifying trend of people – particularly teens and young adults – using chemicals that can be readily obtained nearly anywhere. Understanding this trend is critical in order to prevent, identify and treat those who become addicted or otherwise endangered as a result. The following are 5 recent drug abuse trends that are cause for concern in the US today.

#1 Nutmeg

While it might seem nearly impossible to believe, some people are using nutmeg to get high. According to an article by Mikaela Conley for ABC News, the drug has been likened to the infamous LSD;

“Nutmeg contains myristicin, a natural compound that has mind-altering effects if ingested in large doses. The buzz can last one to two days and can be hallucinogenic, much like LSD.” (1)

However, according to most reports the side effects of the spice aren’t so pleasant and include severe gastrointestinal distress and cardio vascular troubles that for some people could lead to seizures and even death.

#2 Cough Syrup

It’s called “Robo trippin’,” and people have been doing it since at least the 1960’s. Many cough syrups – especially Robotussin products, contain dextromethorphan – a drug that produces hallucinations, among other effects. However, the hallucinations are often frighteningly real to the user, and heart attacks among users as young as 17 have been reported.

Parents and others should be forewarned that in some cases young people may resort to drinking excessive amounts of the liquid cough syrup, although some have been found to use the pill version of the medication.

#3 Bath Salts

Bath salts have been the focus of intense media attention recently as users exhibit bizarre and often dangerous behaviors while high on these substances. One of the most disturbing things about bath salts is that many users report that the high isn’t at all pleasant, yet they still feel powerfully compelled to use the drug again and again.

#4 Aerosols

Aerosols such as furniture polish, Glade potpourri sprays, cans of whipped cream and many other easily available aerosol products can be used to produce a short high by concentrating and inhaling the gasses used to propel the product out of the can. This can lead to frostbite and tissue death on the hands and face, as well as serious damage to the brain and central nervous system.

#5 Hand Sanitizer

Most hand sanitizers contain a high amount of ethanol as the primary antiseptic agent. The concentration level of this type of alcohol is often well above 100 proof, which makes dosing extremely difficult and poisoning likely. However, a drinking hand sanitizer has become a new youth drug abuse trend because it is so readily available.

Because the dangers of using these substance are so severe, it’s important to take immediate action if someone you love has been abusing these or other drugs. This is especially important considering that none of these substances were ever meant for human consumption and can inflict serious harm with little use. Call us now to learn how we can help you – regardless of where you are or what time it is. We’re here for you 24 hours per day, 7 days per week all year long.

(1) Conley, Mikaela Nutmeg Treated as Drug for Hallucinogenic High ABC News 12/09/2010
http://abcnews.go.com/Health/large-doses-nutmeg-hallucinogenic-high/story?id=12347815#.T6_xM-uO2CI
Accessed 05/05/2012

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