Teen Drug Abuse - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Teen Drug Abuse

Ryan Cody
NewsChannel 10

Amarillo, TX - A dangerous drug we told you about a few months ago is reaching more teens than ever before. Synthetic marijuana is becoming a popular product at some local stores. And even the ingestion of some natural plants is landing teens in the hospital.

Melynn Huntley heads up "Safe schools, healthy students." An Amarillo Independant School District program working to prevent drug and alcohol use for students in our area. She's been researching the usage of a new legal form of marijuana.

"I was in one of the local head shops the other day and just in the 15 minutes I was there 3 people came in to purchase, and 2 calls were received looking for a specific kind of synthetic marijuana."

But because it's expensive, experts say more and more children are ingesting jimson weed. A natural plant that grows in Amarillo.

"It doesn't have the same effects as marijuana. It actually takes longer to process through the body. But kids who use it usually wind up in the E. R," says CPS Investigator Julie Miller.

A usage increase in those and other more common substances has prompted AISD to copy a proven program designed to curb the idea that "everybody's doing it."

"We use a clicker system, so we use audience response. Kind of like who wants to be a millionaire," says Megan Knapp of Southern Methodist University.

Students are asked if they use drugs or alcohol. They can respond anonymously and the results are shown live on a screen in the classroom.

"To show students, hey this is what you think other students are doing. This is what's really going on."

So children don't have to feel like they need drugs or alcohol to fit in.

Powered by Frankly