Bath Salts and Substance Use
"Bath Salts Drug Suspected In Miami Face-Eating Attack"
This is the title of a news story which is generating a lot of interest. There are times where the issue of substance use and abuse is almost surreal almost as if it doesn't really exist unless it touches your life, in which case it is pervasive affecting everything and consuming all your thoughts, if you have someone in your life that has an issue with addictions you know what I am talking about.
One of the things we do at Holistic Behavioral Solutions is follow our passion; I love working with kids and helping them get to their next step ( it is the same process as adults but with a little more hopefulness on their part). The topic in my adolescent substance prevention group this week was on "bath salts" and what they can do to us knowingly or unknowingly.
Within the past year I have personally seen the devastation that smoking bath salts has caused for families whose youth have been exposed to this substance in Central New Jersey.According to the CDC, the rate has risen by 2013% between 2010 and 2012 and to date many of the youth that have consumed this substance have not been able to recover, they have been unable to function, unable to go to school, unable to be in the community, often sitting at home for weeks at a time staring into space. We are not sure at this time what the rest of their lives hold.
Bath Salts and Substance Use? Act now!
It is critical that our kids realize that they take their lives into their own hands when they go out with their friends to "celebrate" and either consume illicit substances or put themselves at risk by being drugged by others. EVERYONE is at risk whether we realize it or not and sometimes the safest course of action is vigilance.
How can we be vigilant as parents? By parenting with the end in mind; talk to our youth about what we expect from them as community members, tell them the positive and healthy ways that you celebrate in your own life, tell them of a time where you struggled with addiction to something (personally, I use my addiction to soft drinks but use something that is authentic to you). When we teach our kids they don't have to be perfect we give them freedom to make mistakes but we also give them healthy boundaries to let them know we value them and they should value themselves.
Finally, ask them this question "Would you give your child this substance?"