Tuscany, Italy Drug Addiction Among Youth

Drug use is a widespread phenomenon among the juvenile population of Tuscany, with potentially serious consequences, not only for the short term effects on young people’s health, but for their own lives. Drug use is almost always associated to other types of risky behaviors, such as alcohol abuse, tobacco use, dangerous driving and involvement in criminal activities. In 2010, official figures placed Tuscany among the Italian regions with the greatest need of treatment for opiates or cocaine use, with a prevalence higher than the Italian average of 10 out of 1000 residents, age 15 - 64.

Alcohol and cannabis derivatives, such as marijuana and hashish, are the most common substances used by all the people, of any age group, who make use of some kind of drug. But in particular, this affects young people who start using drugs. Already in 2005, a study carried out in Tuscany on a sample of students reported that the median age of the first experiments with drugs ranges between 15 and 17, and that 90% of the cases have to do with a cannabis derivative. Then there is the phenomenon of binge drinking (at least 5 drinks in one occasion), also very popular among young people of the same age group, that involves more than 50% of them. The same percentage admits smoking tobacco regularly and having a mediocre to poor academic performance. Also, the “new drugs” seem to easily take hold among young people, because they are wrongly considered less dangerous than “traditional” drugs such as heroin and cocaine. These include amphetamines, ecstasy, hallucinogenic and prescription drugs, like pain killers or antidepressants, often found in the medicine cabinet of a family member or a friend, and then used illegally.

Narconon in Tuscany

Despite the numerous prevention activities undertaken in the region, the indiscriminate use of drugs by young people in Tuscany does not subside, and it almost seems that the approach so far has not been effective or that there is a need for more widespread action.

A thorough detoxification followed by counseling and life skills training enable a person in a drug program to see things in a whole new light so they can live an enjoyable, productive life again. This is the way the Narconon drug and alcohol rehabilitation program works.

To those who wish to break the pattern of drug use or drinking that is destroying their lives, Narconon provides a unique drug recovery program that works.

For more information and assistance, please write to info@narconon.org or visit our page of the Narconon centers to find the nearest drug rehab center.

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