Pubdate: Fri, 25 Nov 2005
Source: Brock Citizen (CN ON)
Copyright: 2005 Brock Citizen
Bookmark: (Youth)


Are you sure that your child is just saying no?

If not, the Durham Region health department may have the resources you

The health department is celebrating Drug Awareness Week, Nov. 20 to
26, by offering a free youth drug prevention kit to parents and
concerned adults highlighting this year's theme "Talk."

The kit provides important information about drugs, links to services
and resources, and communication tips to help parents meet the
challenge of talking to their children about alcohol and drugs.

"Our youth drug prevention kit is designed to help parents initiate a
discussion on drugs by providing information on substance abuse and
its affects," said Heather Tucker, a public health nurse with Durham
Region Health Department.

The kit contains important information and helpful resources to assist
parents in talking to their child about alcohol and drugs, and to help
young people manage the risks they face.

According to the 2001 Ontario Student Drug Use Survey, there has been
a significant increase in the use of alcohol, marijuana, ecstasy,
cocaine, and other drugs in the past 10 years.

"Marijuana and alcohol are not the only substances parents should be
concerned about," said Ms. Tucker.

"Drugs such as crystal meth, oxycodone and inhalants are becoming
increasingly available to youth and are incredibly dangerous."

Ms. Tucker notes that all three drugs can result in serious health
consequences. Crystal meth is highly addictive, cheap, easily
available and has a high risk of harmful side-effects. Oxycodone is a
prescription drug used to relieve pain over a long period of time.
Tablets can be crushed, destroying the ability to be slowly released
into the body, thereby creating a heroin-like high which can be
extremely dangerous.

Although some may consider experimenting with alcohol and drugs to be
a normal part of growing up, the consequences can be tragic.

"It is important that parents are aware of issues facing youth so they
can access the resources they may need to help them talk to their
kids," said Ms. Tucker.

While some parents may not feel confident in talking to their kids
about drugs and alcohol, it is an important topic to discuss.

"Whether you are a parent, relative or friend, being there for a young
person is powerful," Ms. Tucker said.

To obtain your free youth drug information kit, call the health
department at 1-800-841-2729 or visit online at
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