Drugs Lead To Pain
“Every day 4,000 12-17 year olds use drugs for the first time” (SAMHSA- NSDUH 2013). If you think about it — Life Academy has about 500 students. 500 times 8 equals 4,000, so that is 8 Life Academy schools that use drugs for the first time every day. This is a problem that needs to be talked more about. Based on my research, it is true that teen drug abuse negatively impacts teens’ lives by leading to risky sex and hurting others and themselves.
Teen drug abuse affects teens’ lives by increasing their chances of having risky sex. This is first proved by Casa Palmera which is a treatment center in Del Mar, California. The staff of the center put together an article about the effects of drugs on teens. They pointed out, “Teens that use drugs are five times more likely to have sex than teens who don’t use drugs. Teens that use drugs are also more likely to have unprotected sex and have sex with a stranger. This leads to higher risks of STDs, teen pregnancy and sexual assault” (Casa Palmera Staff). The keywords in this quote are unprotected sex, STDs, and sexual assault because the author wanted to express how unprotected sex, STDs, and sexual assault are serious topics to be talked about. Unprotected sex is very dangerous because people are not using any form of protection to protect oneself from HIV and STIs. Teens who abuse drugs have unprotected sex because when they are under the influence of drugs their decision making skills are blocked by drugs. Often, teens get sexualy asaulted because they have a greater chance of getting taken advantage of when they are either high or drunk. That is when someone might feel like they have a chance to rape an adolescent because they know that they will not do much about it during the moment. Additionally, during my interview with an Oakland teacher Rowan Driscoll, he was expressing how using drugs reduces inhibitions. He stated, “teens who abuse drugs are probably going to engage in more risky behavior because they have reduced inhibitions” (Driscoll). According to the dictionary, the word inhibition means “a voluntary or involuntary restraint on the direct expression of an instinct.” This is important because when people are under the influence of drugs people tend to lose control of their instincts and might not think before having unprotected sex. Not being aware of what is going on one might get oneself into things that can be really harmful, like HIV and STIs. When one’s sober, one will have those instincts and control over harmful situations and have more control of one’s body and mind.
Additionally, teen drug abuse affects teens’ lives by making them more likely to hurt others. This is first proved by Scott Johnson who wrote an article based on a drug lord named Reed who is trying to make a change in his community. The article “Former drug dealer speaks to youth, urges a different path” quoted Reed, saying, “you’re putting your lives on the line and other people’s lives on the line” (Johnson). This is important because an example of putting one’s life and others’ in danger is drunk driving. This is very dangerous because one is often not conscious about what is going on. It is important to be conscious about one’s surroundings when one is driving especially on a busy road. But one can’t do that when one are under the influence. When one gets into an accident people who are involved are in serious danger because accidents can be lethal. This is even more dangerous for teens because teens often get a car around the age of 16 or 17. Now teens are able to go to parties where often drugs are exposed to them. These teens get under the influence and start to drive, but what they do not realize is that they are putting others’ lives in danger. Additionally when I was interviewing Ms.Garibaldi who works in the Life Academy main office in Oakland, CA. She explained how teen teen drug abuse leads to violence. She commented, “Teens under the influence are more vulnerable to make wrong decisions that can be violent”(Garibaldi). This is important because when teens are high they get manipulated or influenced to make bad decisions. Sometimes these bad decisions can be robbing people or stores but they do not realise that they are committing a crime. They also don’t realise that they are endangering someone’s life. This shows how they are more vulnerable to make wrong decisions.
Some may argue that some drugs can have a positive effect on people’s health. This is shown by an article written by Marc Lallanilla titled 6 Party Drugs That May Have Health Benefits. The article was talking about how marijuana can help benefit one’s health. The author wrote, “The drug has been shown through years of scientific research to relieve chronic pain, prevent PTSD, stimulate appetite for people with AIDS wasting syndrome, control nausea, relieve intra-ocular pressure associated with glaucoma, treat opioid dependence and improve the symptoms of Crohn’s disease” (Lallanilla). This demonstrates that this drug is very important in one’s life because it is what helps them with the disease that they have. Without this drug they may not be able to live a comfortable life because they have to lie in fear. However some people may take advantage of the drugs that they are able to legally have and could maybe use more than their dosage or even sell the drugs. This is when they start to harm others and themselves.
To conclude teen drug abuse is negatively impacting teens life because they are not able to have control over their body when they are under the influence of drugs. Then situations like having risky sex and hurting others and oneself start to take place. That is why teen drug abuse should be talked more about because each day thousands of teens are putting their life in danger when they get involved with drugs.
Photo by torbakhopper