Synthetic Drug Abuse: A Guide for Teachers & Parents - Myths, Symptoms and Prevention
by Serhat Pala & Grace Fisher
It seems like nothing stands still in the world of substance abuse. Once we have a handle on one crisis, another one pops up. This round we find ourselves confronting synthetic drugs—drugs made from hazardous chemicals capable of producing a high 15 times more powerful than marijuana, and, in my opinion, are also 15 times more dangerous. With all of the research being published lately about drug use in teens having adverse effects on brain development, it is clear that we need to step up our game in education and prevention. While one of the first places this education can occur is in the home, many parents don’t have access to the resources and information that would empower them in the face of their teen’s drug use.
This book was developed to be a resource for parents on synthetic drugs, and then provide concrete steps to take in order to determine level of use in your teen and get them the help they need. We discuss topics like what synthetics are made of, where they can be bought, why the government is having trouble legislating them, how to tell if your teen is using, and how to begin a testing and intervention process. We also get into some of the more difficult questions when it comes to parenting a teen using drugs, like whether or not we should snoop through their things. Research within the book has been cited from a variety of resources including textbooks, books written by parents, various nonprofit organizations that specialize in substance abuse awareness, education, and prevention, and also from reports published by the United Nations.
The writers were influenced to create this book not only because of personal experiences with family members and friends, but also when it became apparent that parents did not have enough solid resources where they could begin their search for knowledge about drugs, and many did not know how to access the good information that is available or who to turn to for help. Serhat Pala is the President and founder of TestCountry, a San Diego-based point of service diagnostic testing solutions company that offers a wide range of test solutions, including drug of abuse and medical health test kits. Grace Fisher is a yoga instructor with experience in childcare and working with teens, specifically in promoting healthy lifestyle choices, and is currently working toward becoming a Community Health Educator.