Drug Abuse Prevention, Communications & Information – The Keys to Helping Your Kids &Your Friends

You can prevent someone near you from getting hooked on drugs or stopping an addiction with not a lot of effort and talent. Start with honing your communication skills. Decide to get into a conversation about the dire effects upon the mind and body with the person you love or know has a problem.

But how to do it?

First, consider what NOT to do: Do not overload him or her with too many statistics or with a preacher-like lecture. There is an old saying that “A mind that ‘s changed against its will is of the same opinion still.” There’s a lot of truth in that bit of wisdom. Rather start any conversation establishing agreement (on any subject). Establish agreement so that the person feels comfortable with you in the conversation rather than being on the defensive because of the overload of information being shoved at him or her in a too-long lecture. A lecture is not a real communication.

A real communication is a two-way street in which information is both sent out, received with understanding, and then completed with an answer that deals with the subject at hand.

Also, any real communication is done by keeping a “low gradient” on the subject. In other words, start with a subject, such as the weather, sports, or another area of common interest in which agreement can be sought easily with no disagreement whatsoever. Instead of hammering a person with a ton of statistics about how bad drugs are, how much drug abuse is associated with crime, violence, unhappiness, etc., etc., etc., statistic, statistic, statistic, just keep the message easy to understand and with a minimum of emotion. You will know when you are successful at communicating when the two-way conversation is comfortable between the two of you. With a youngster, that may take awhile and might take several conversations spread over days or weeks.

When your youngster or other friend is comfortable talking to you about the dangers of street-drug abuse, you wil find that you need reference materials that are easy to read and understand. They, in effect, are third party influences that do not come from “mom and dad.” Instead, the youngster is more willing to accept the “third party” authority of the booklets that you can give them. (After all, what do mom and dad or grandpa and grandma know about anything anyway?)

Also, know that your children looks up to you more than you realize, even though they would never admit it.

Concurrently, they also face peer pressure so intense that you have to do something positive to offset it. You can also use the booklets to role-play situations in which your child is confronted by an overbearing drug-pusher. When your child stops the pusher in his tracks with a resounding “no,” you will have succeeded even though you were never told what happened.

Safe Use of Medicines Is Important in Drug Abuse Prevention

Many cases of drug addiction started from mere curiosity. An error in the use of a prescription drug, for example, could have led to experimentation. In a typical case, the person probably enjoyed the euphoria he experienced when he first took the drug, and this made him use the drug repeatedly.

This is the same reason why parents have to be extra careful about the drugs they keep in their medicine chests. A young child may be tempted to try what a bottle in the chest contains, adding to the many cases described above.

Time and again, it’s been said that prevention is better than cure, and this applies to drug addiction: It is a lot better to prevent the problem from happening than to deal with it when it does occur. There are many ways by which drug abuse prevention is applied best, and one of these is in using drugs safely.

If a list of safe drug use is to be made in this regard, it will most probably be topped by this: A person should not take doses of drugs beyond what have been prescribed by his doctor. In addition to this, he should follow the instructions indicated on the medicine label to a tee.

Unused portions of medicines should not be saved for future use, unless this has been consulted to a doctor. Also, drugs that have been prescribed to you must not be shared with anyone else just because you think you have the same case of illness. There could be serious consequences – drug addiction included – if a person takes medicines or drugs that are not intended for him.

If a person feels he is ill and decides to see a doctor, he should provide enough information to the doctor about what he feels is wrong with him. This is important so that the doctor can prescribe the appropriate medication and treat him effectively. The person also has to make sure that the doctor knows all the drugs he uses regularly, whether these are nonprescription or prescription medications. This is to avoid the risk of drug interactions or over-dosage.

A person should keep a record of any bad reaction he has had to a drug prescribed to him. Such reaction may include getting into an intense state of euphoria. The person may mistake the condition for well-being, and here lies the potential for addiction or abuse as the person craves for more of the drug.