Heroin use and suburban teens are two terms that don’t feel like they belong in the same sentence. When many think of suburban teens they think of soccer, video games, driving tests and even the problem. They don’t think of a full blown heroin addiction that is in need of treatment.
Unfortunately, the heroin abuse problem with suburban teens is astounding. But what many don’t know is that the problem didn’t begin with heroin. There is a major epidemic going on with teenagers across the country and it is starting with something that is promoted as “safer” and given to teens by people they trust; doctors. The problem is starting with prescription drugs. And after teens use these substances and become addicted they gateway into the use of heroin.
The Statistics Don’t Lie
The problem of suburban heroin use with teen’s starts with something as simple as a legal prescription; a thing that is being given to more and more young people every year. One of the last known statistics indicates that over 11 million kids were being put on anti-depressants alone since 2003. Additional information indicates that the total number of legal prescriptions given out per year in every age group has gone up about 39% since then. These are prescriptions for all types of drugs including opioid painkillers, depressant drugs and prescription stimulants.
Above and beyond the prescription problem is the marijuana epidemic. High school kids state that marijuana is the easiest drug to come by. In more than 17 states this may be because the drug has been legalized for medical purposes. This in addition to the illegal trafficking of marijuana and the substance can be picked up by most high school kids.
Other drugs that suburban teens can score included synthetic drugs, and illicit substances like heroin, ecstasy, and even cocaine.
In total, 17% of high school kids use drugs during the school day. And, 86% of high school kids were fully aware of other kids abusing drugs during the school day.
Years ago not too many problems where plaguing suburban teens. However, today, high school students that live in suburbs are some of the most at risk groups for heroin abuse in the United States.
How This Leads To Heroin
The statistics above indicate a major problem but how does this lead to heroin addiction. The truth is that the drugs listed above are mostly gateway substances with the exception of cocaine [although cocaine is its own gateway into crack].
A teenager will start out abusing alcohol, smoking marijuana or taking a stolen or borrowed prescription. The drug will provide the “high” that they are looking for. As the addiction continues the young person will start to try stronger and harder drugs. In the case of prescriptions they will build up a prescription drug tolerance where they have to take more and more of the prescription to get the same effect. Eventually, in the case of prescriptions, the teen cannot get a high off of them and turns to heroin as a cheaper and stronger alternative. In a nutshell this is how suburban teens are getting hooked on heroin.
As a side note, another trend or “piece of the puzzle” is Social Media. According to recent statistics 75% of students who see their friends engaging in drug or alcohol use [partying] state that they are more likely to do the same. Another additional piece of information is that those who are left alone at night without parental supervision also are more likely to engage in drug or alcohol usage.
The Narconon program has many effective alternatives for those addicted to drugs and alcohol including Narconon sauna that helps addicts to remove residues from the body left by drugs and reduce physical cravings.