An estimated 24.6 million Americans aged 12 or older (9.4% of the population) have used an illicit drug in the past month according to a 2013 survey conducted by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health. With this, there have been young adults as well as youth experimenting with different drugs. People hear more about drug overdoses in young adults than they hear in adults. There has been a steady increase in substance use by societies youth and young adults.
When one starts out trying different drugs they never think about the consequences of the drug or what the drug may be. Due to this, there have been more hospitalizations due to drug usage. The most hospitalizations for drug use has been heroin-related SSTI. According to a research paper titled "Nationwide increase in hospitalizations for heroin-related soft tissue infections: Associations with Structural Market Conditions," "Hospitalization rates of O-SSTI doubled from 4 to 9 per 100,000 nationally between 1993 and 2010." (Paragraph 3). This depicts that those using drugs that require to be injected in your arm have a chance of damaging soft tissues and causing infections. With this, people need to understand the full risks these drugs have and how it may affect the body.
Heroin has also remained the main cause of drug-related overdoses in its users. It has been stated that "opioid overdose is a major cause of premature death among heroin users." (Darke and Hall Paragraph 2). With opioid overdoses causing premature death, people are preventing a new generation of life to come through and make a change. They are killing each other based on the choices they have been making. Heroin is not the only drug that is having an impact on societies youth and young adults.
There has also been an increase in Marijuana usage in youth. In fact, marijuana is the most commonly used drug in youth. According to a news article, "NSDUH shows increase in some SUDs and depression, especially among youth" by Knopf, Knopf stated: "Marijuana is still the most commonly used illicit drug, with 8.3% of people age 12 or older using at least once a month" (Paragraph 5). With this, kids younger and younger are starting to get in contact with these drugs and trying them out thus creating an increase in substance use for youth and young adults. This later on down the road can lead to a substance abuse problem.
This should not be the case. Over the past year, the drug usage has remained steady. Knopf also stated, "The percentage of adolescents who were current marijuana users remained steady over the past year, 7% in 2015 versus 7.4% in 2014." (Paragraph 5). This means that over the years there have not been any huge spikes in marijuana usage in adolescents, but it does not mean it is not a problem. There is still a problem with our youth using drugs at these young ages. A bigger problem would be the misuse of prescription drugs in our young adults.
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Association also released a second report on the misusage of prescription drugs. This report talked about the misuse of psychotherapeutic medication. Knopf also stated that, among people aged 12 and older, 6.4 million currently misuse psychotherapeutic medication (Paragraph 10). This medication is mostly used to treat or help those with a mental disorder of depression, and or schizophrenia etc. The drugs can alter people’s moods and behavior. With people taking these kinds of drugs, but are not prescribed to them can cause a lot of issues with the brain and the bodies development.
Not only is the misuse of a psychotherapeutic medication bad for the body, the misuse of pain relievers on the body is as well. There are 3.8 million people currently misusing prescription pain relievers. With people misusing painkillers, their bodies will become more dependent on it, and cause breathing to slow down sometimes to the point where they can stop breathing. Some ways to prevent the misuses of these drugs is to buy a weekly or monthly pill track container. Only putting in the correct dosage of medication. Another way to prevent this from happening can be having the parents take all medication and put the medication somewhere where the kids could not find the medication or locking them up.
There has been a stable rise in certain drug usages within youth and young adults. There have been more heroin-related deaths as well as hospitalizations. There has also been a steady increase in the number of adolescents using marijuana, as well as misuses when it comes to prescription medication in young adults. As a community, it is our responsibility to ensure the safety and well-being of the kids. If we set an example for the kids as they grow up, we can soon see a decrease in the amount of substance use by our societies youth and young adults.