I am asked daily, by concerned parents, relatives and friends of teenagers, what can be done to keep teens away from the drugs and alcohol that seem to permeate our schools. The statistics surrounding teen drug and alcohol use are daunting and justify action by those concerned for a loved one. The average age today for a teen to first use alcohol is 13. The statistics on drug use are equally terrifying. Continue reading 5 Parent Tips for Keeping Kids Away from Drugs and Alcohol
As students have been taught sex ed over the years, the curriculum has evolved to properly include a discussion on drugs and alcohol (at most schools). However, according to our research, this topic is still secondary in the curriculum to sex, pregnancy and STDs. Continue reading Let Us Help You Educate Your Students About the Dangers of Addiction
50,000 deaths in 2014…. This was just reported by the U.S. government. That translates to 136 people dying each day — 5 per hour.
Was our government reporting casualties of the Syrian civil war? Cancer deaths? Deaths on highways? Murders? No. This breathtaking number is the number of deaths due to drugs and alcohol in our country in one year. Continue reading Children of Alcoholics and Addicts: The Forgotten Ones
For those of you familiar with the PotatoAllergy.com movement and its focus on educating children about addiction, the call for action in this week’s landmark report on addiction from the U.S. Surgeon General will come as no surprise.
Among the important findings in the 400+ page report, the U.S. Surgeon General recognizes that educating children about the dangers of addiction before they are exposed to drugs and alcohol is crucial in preventing future battles with addiction. The Surgeon General properly points out that children who start drinking before the age of 15 are four times more likely to become addicts later on than those that start at age 20 or later. It’s up to entire communities — teachers and principals, parents, doctors — to keep children from falling through the cracks, he told NBC News.
He issues a call to all Americans to help prevent addiction by educating our youth instead of having to focus on treatment decades later. “I’m calling the country to action,” he said. “We are going to need everybody to address addiction in America.”
Children with addiction in their genes are at an even higher risk and need even more attention. Children on alcoholics, for example, are five times more likely to become alcoholics than their peers.
The statistics above result in a horrifying reality for children of alcoholics — those who begin drinking before the age of 15 may be 20 times more likely to become an alcoholic than a peer. If this does not grab our society’s attention as a call to action then what will.
Yet today there are only a handful of resources that focus on educating and preparing children with addiction in their genes. Shatterproof.com and PotatoAllergy.com are two such movements that have already heeded the Surgeon General’s plea. We can only hope that this is just the beginning.
Marc Treitler and his family are the founders and creators of the family addiction education website www.potatoallergy.com and the authors and illustrators of My Dad Is an Alcoholic, What About Me?: A Pre-teen Guide to Conquering Addictive Genes.
As our society has jumped deep into the world of healthy food over the last decade, it is common for consumers to demand to know all of the nutritional information and ingredients in every bite they consume. At McDonald’s, you can now view the exact calorie count of your various choices. And Starbucks proudly displays loads of “nutritional” information in its stores and on its websites. Continue reading Care About What’s in Your Food? How About Your Heroin?
The rallying cry of college students for decades has been based in part on the characters in the 1970s movie Animal House, which takes place in a fictional fraternity house in Oregon. Amongst the most idolized characters was Bluto, the partying, class-skipping, whiskey-chugging, peeping Tom character immortalized by John Belushi. Continue reading “Toga! Toga!” Was Bluto Right? No, He’s Dead
Unless you live on a private, remote island, you know someone affected by alcoholism. Our country is riddled with alcoholics — from those living on the streets to those flying commercial aircrafts. And in most of these cases, an innocent victim is the child of the alcoholic. Studies estimate that over 11,000,000 children in the United States currently live with one or more alcoholic parents. Continue reading For Children of Alcoholics, Knowledge Is Power
Is one or more of your parents an active alcoholic or drug addict? Do you feel like none of your friends or peers are going through what you are? Do you feel like you have no one to talk to? Continue reading Kids, Do You Have an Addicted Parent? You Are NOT Alone
One of the most common excuses for underage alcohol abuse is that “everyone drinks” — classmates, family members and friends. Whether these thoughts come in the form of peer pressure or just an excuse for behavior, it is important for kids to know that almost half of the world’s population never drinks alcohol, according to the World Health Organization. Continue reading Hey, Kids: Half the People on this Planet Never Drink Alcohol
Some amazing organizations have developed in the last 100 years in the U.S. that have transformed the lives of millions.
For example, Alcoholics Anonymous has helped tens of millions of adults conquer their disease since 1935. Prior to that time, alcoholism was seen as a death sentence. Continue reading Alcoholics Anonymous, Al-anon and Alateen: What About the Kids?