How to discuss drug abuse with teens - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

How to discuss drug abuse with teens

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MADISON (WKOW) -- Many teens experiment with alcohol and drugs, but they often don't see the link between their actions today and the consequences that could come tomorrow.

Dr. Randy Brown, the director for UW Hospital's Center for Addictive Disorders, says drug overdoses among teens have been on the incline in our area, especially overdoses from opiates, like pain pills and heroin.

Last week, two high school students overdosed on NBOMe, which Dr. Brown says it fairly new.

NBOMe it came about pretty recently and online sales not until about 20120... have been fatalities reported.

"That's a relatively recently, fabricated drug that's very closely related to LCD, it goes to similar parts of the brain, it cause psychedelic experience, hallucinations," Dr. Brown said.

Dr. Brown said there have been reported fatalities from using NBOMe, but says overdoses in our area from that drug are not common. 

Teen substance abuse can cause all sorts of problems down the road, but Dr. brown says the first problem is usually addiction.

"And that can lead to all sorts of disarray in a person's life, and function, and promise," Dr. Brown said. "Certain drugs have also been linked to various forms of mental illness and things like that."

Dr. Brown says there are a lot of signs of substance abuse to watch out for. 

"If you see big changes in your teens behavior, so academic performance, drop off in activities, big changes in their peer group, who they're hanging out with, hostile behavior, things like that are a big change for your teen that might be a time to start thinking about a conversation," Dr. Brown said.

Dr. Brown said it's important to have a conversation with your children about drugs. He says you should have that discussion by the time your child is in middle school.

He said that when talking to your teen about drugs, try to avoid lectures, and make it more of a discussion. One way he says you can discuss drugs is to use things going on in the news to bring the subject up to your kids. He also says parents can use online resources to help find ways to talk with their teen.


Dr. Brown says the following are good resources to start from:

Dr. Brown joined us on 27 News at 5 on Wednesday.

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