Students at Our Lady of Peace School learned about the dangers of drugs today.
US Attorney William Ihlenfeld spoke of the pitfalls of starting on the path to things like alcohol, caffeine, cigarettes and illegal drugs.
He said even cough medicine, taken in the wrong dosage, can be harmful and habit-forming.
He said addiction occurs when your thoughts are consumed with getting more of that drug, rather than with the regular parts of your life such as school, home, friends and activities.
“Well according to researchers, the key age is right about 21 years of age, where, if young people don’t abuse alcohol, don’t use nicotine, don’t use other illicit drugs, then they’re very unlikely to have a problem with those substances. And so it’s important for us to talk to young people before they get to that age to encourage them not to use those substances,” Ihlenfeld said.
Ihlenfeld urged the students if they see a friend struggling with addiction, be sure to tell a parent, teacher or counselor.
He said early intervention could save a life, and it isn’t being a tattle-tale or a snitch, it’s being a caring friend.
He cited the case of one young man whose friend typed an email to the boy’s father, about his heroin addiction.
But he deleted that email rather than sending it, and the young man died of an overdose.