The Stages of Change Model Shines Light on Recovery

In the common dialogue about recovery and substance use, there are a lot of black and white terms. You’re sober or you’re not; you’re in recovery or out of it; you’ve made change, or you haven’t.

But most people who have lived with addiction for any amount of time know that there are shades of nuance and progression involved in making a major life change. Sometimes it’s two steps forward, one step back. If you’ve experienced this, you’re not alone.

In fact, scientists have documented this phenomenon. To understand how people go about deciding to make a major life change, researchers developed the Stages of Change Model, also known as the Transtheoretical Model of Change.

Familiarizing yourself with this model can help you understand your own behavior, or that of a loved one who is trying to get and stay sober. It can also help you accept that relapse is a normal, even expected, part of recovery.

The Stages of Change

According to the Stages of Change model, there are six stages that people go through when they are considering making a major change. They are:

  • Precontemplation. People at this stage don’t see any problem with their behavior, and don’t have plans to change. For the person at the precontemplation stage, like a person who is still using drugs or alcohol, the idea of making a change seems to have more drawbacks than the idea of continuing life how they’re currently leading it.
  • Contemplation. At this stage, a person is beginning to see that their behavior is problematic. They plan to change, but aren’t ready to change quite yet. A person who is using might know that their substance abuse is problematic, but they’re ambivalent about making a change.
  • Preparation or Determination. After contemplating change, a person becomes committed to making a change. They know that their substance use is problematic and that they need to get healthier, and they’re starting to explore ways of getting sober, like researching treatment centers.
  • Action. At this point, a person has decided to make the change that they hope will improve their lives. For people with substance use disorder, that might mean getting treatment. They’re learning about life in sobriety and trying their new skills to cope with challenges without using drugs or alcohol.
  • Maintenance. After taking action, people in the maintenance phase know what they have to do to maintain change. That might mean working an aftercare program and engaging in activities like exercise, volunteering or anything else that keeps them sober and responsible.
  • Relapse. We would like to think that after going through the hard work of recovery, change is permanent. However, it’s well-known that most people who get sober will relapse at some point. Accepting that relapse is part of recovery can help reduce shame and stigma, and encourage people to restart the stages of change as soon as they can.

What The Stages of Change Say About Relapse

It’s scary to think about relapse, especially when you’re new in recovery. But putting your head in the sand will not help you stay sober. Being frank about the risk of relapse can serve as motivation to adhere to your recovery program. Understanding relapse risk can help you grasp that relapse is not the end of meaningful change.

Consider this: most people have to go through the Stages of Change 4 – 7 times before they make lasting change. Knowing that making change is a fluid and dynamic process can normalize the experiences that you’re likely to have during your recovery journey.

Processes of Change

The same researchers who identified the stages of change also identified ten processes of change that can be used to help motivate people looking to alter their lives. For example, consciousness raising helps you become more aware of an unhealthy behavior. Environmental reevaluation helps you understand how your behavior can impact the people around you. Forming helping relationships can keep you sober and on track.

In order to make lasting change, you have to determine which processes of change resonate the most with you. That way, you can tap into these sources of motivation when you’re struggling.

Sunshine Coast Health Centre is a non 12-step drug and alcohol rehabilitation center in British Columbia. Learn more here.

By: The Fix staff
Title: The Stages of Change Model Shines Light on Recovery
Sourced From:
Published Date: Wed, 10 Feb 2021 08:28:31 +0000

At New Horizon Drug Rehab, we understand addiction. If you or a family member are afflicted with addiction or substance abuse we can help. We work with the top centers throughout the US to provide the best detox and addiction treatments available.

Call Now: (877) 747-9974

Lesson 9: Expect the Unexpected

The following is excerpted from Crushing It: How I Crushed Diet Culture, Addiction & the Patriarchy by Kortney Olson.

  • 8/09: “I have been doing sessions for about ten years. Not many, once or twice a year. Pretty much all of them have been scissor sessions with some pretty strong women and some not so strong women. KO is one of the strongest women, and if she continues to work her legs like she is talking about doing, holy crap. Watch out. Usually I don’t tap much, I just like to see what limit the women can scissor. I tapped a lot more often with KO. She put me in a sideways figure-four with me sitting up and her laying sideways on the couch with her leg around my neck and I remember tapping, then she reapplied the pressure, and the next thing I remember is waking up on the floor. She put me out, I was snoring. After that I had some melons I bought for her to crush and she did it with no problem. I also have to say KO is one of the best-looking fitness/bodybuilders I have seen, her look reminded me of “Le Femme Nikita”, she has a cute baby face with a killer attitude!!!! What a mix!! I am betting she has the ability to be one of the best out there. ” -Clark

I owe a lot to Clark. If it weren’t for Clark, I’m not sure where I’d be today. Sliding Honda car doors, I guess. I sure as shit wouldn’t have a bunch of watermelon tattoos on my arm, and there’s a fair chance I wouldn’t have blue checks on my social media accounts.

Clark was a local fan. Pretty basic dude who worked as a graphic designer in the Bay Area. I’ll never forget his email asking for a scissor session. He wanted to see if I “had what it takes” to knock him out. He‘d seen maybe twenty bodybuilders over the last decade, with only one who could successfully knock him out. He ended the email asking if I‘d be open to him bringing some watermelons for me to “try” and crush between my legs at the end of the session. Lastly, could I bring my video camera to film my “attempt”?

The words “try”, “attempt” and “if you got what it takes” are a surefire way to get me onboard, dickhead. I don’t see why not. After all, it doesn’t involve an enema of any kind.

As usual, I wrote back with my cocky ass attitude, feeling the need to justify my rate, and make some kind of outlandish statement that would wind up having me stressed the fuck out until the session was over.

“Hi Clark-
In case you needed reminding, my name is KO for a reason. Be forewarned, I’m the best there is. Once you have a session with me, the rest will seem like a waste of money. When and where?”

KO always had to be the best.
KO had something to prove.
But Kortney felt like she had to justify herself, always.

We set the session up for the following week. Nothing out of the ordinary, I’d drive down to his office and I’d spend an hour living up to my email claim and name. The time came and I got dressed.

I slipped on my cute matching black Bebe thong and bralette, followed by tugging my way into the black, wet-looking pleather leggings that somehow one day appeared in my wardrobe. I pulled on one of my office ‘dress shirts’ which had the capability of sending me to the HR director back in the dealership days. Looking like a personal stewardess for Hugh Heffner on top and something out of the matrix on the bottom, I confidently bee-bopped my way towards takeoff and grabbed my video camera. With a slight pull of anxiety over whether or not I was going to come through and actually be ‘the best he’d ever seen’, I chewed up another few Norcos.

Guess I can leave my stun gun. I’ve had enough back and forth to feel comfortable with Clark. Because ya know… people are always who they say they are on the internet. Including myself. At least I don’t feel fat today.

No longer a middle classer with a Honda, I painfully strutted my too-tight high heels straight out the front door and into my newly financed Acura. Adorned with a professional decal across the back window, I backed out of the driveway with zero fucks regarding the poor choice of personal branding. Underneath the enlarged words of HARD AS FUK! sat my website, as if some curious passer-by on the highway needed to know who I was.

Armed with an adequate stash of pills, I cranked the stereo up and lost myself in the music. After an hour and a half drive, I parked in Clark’s office complex and walked into the building to anxiously find his suite. Feeling like I was in a scene out of Outbreak, I started walking the dimly lit hallway while feeling eerily alone and empty

Bit of a shitty rundown complex. I wonder if anyone else even occupies this building, and if so, could they hear me scream?

Just like most things that made me anxious when thinking about the ‘what ifs’, I was in front of Clark’s door before I knew it, giving the rhythmic and happy sounding knock I learned from my dad, ’Bom, bom, bom-bom-bom. Bom. Bom.’

Shit. I should have been a little more dominating on that knock. I sound like a girl scout trying to sell cookies as opposed to an FBI agent coming to fuck your life up. God I always fuck shit u….

Clark opened his office door and interrupted my train of thought as he stood there with an energy of intimidation and nervousness.

“Hey KO! Did you find the place ok?”
”Hi Clark! I did, thank you,” I replied while reaching out to give him a hug.

Maybe that’s what made me different. Maybe Rob programmed that hug when opening the door with strange men I’ve just met over the internet. Maybe I needed another pill. In the midst of our embrace, I looked around the five hundred-ish square foot office for any kind of sign he was a serial killer while my irrefutable inner voice butted in as usual. 

Such a shame I took my real estate appraisal course while high on meth and drinking heavily. I really could have done something with that.

“So, what’s with the tarp, Clark?” I said as it caught my eye. As I stared at the four foot by six foot crinkled, bright blue painters tarp, I immediately thought about all the late night interior paint jobs I’d done on Billy’s mom’s house while being high on meth.
“That’s for the watermelon, KO! If you can actually break one.”
“Oh, right! Guess it threw me off seeing that we’re in your office!” I retorted as I looked around and noticed there were no windows.
“Yeah, it’s my name on the lease and I only have one other guy who works with me part time, so why not?” Clark said with his cool guy attitude.

As usual, Clark was an average guy. Happily married but missing a piece of excitement in his life that I’m sure his wife could fulfill had they ever talked about ‘it’.

After I set my purse down on the ground, I looked Clark up and down.
“So only one woman in over a decade, huh?” I said while noticing he didn’t have a thick neck whatsoever. By my calculations, Clark would have only been one hundred and sixty pounds soaking wet.

As I sat on the floor and started peeling my skin tight leggings off over my high heels, Clark began rearranging some folding chairs.

“Yeah, I don’t know what it is. I have this weird capability to withstand any woman’s scissors with the exception of Yasmine. I’ve managed to really piss a few bodybuilders and wrestlers off!” he said with a little smirk. With his attitude and mannerisms, Clark reminded me of a stoned, hippy surfer bro from Manhattan Beach. But between his looks and the memorabilia sitting around his office, he screamed the NASCAR and Pabst Blue Ribbon type.

Feeling solidly high from my steady dose of daily narcotics, I stood up with just my thong, high heels and blouse on. All part of the KO tease, of course.

“Wow, KO!” Clark exclaimed from across the room. “Those legs are something else!”

I stood and looked down at my twenty seven inch legs and replied, “Yes, they‘re magnificent, aren’t they?” while momentarily forgetting about how much I hated them when I was alone.

“Wait till you feel them around your neck, Clark. I’m not so sure you’ll be saying the same words.” I said seductively while tugging at the elastic sleeve around my arm. Pulling it up just enough to sit across the middle of my bicep, I flexed while Clark stood there with his mouth gaping open like some kind of cartoon character. Now completely in my KO headspace, I continued with my shit talking.

“In fact, I highly doubt you’ll be able to speak at all by the time I’m done with you.”.

. . .

Now arranged in a straight row, I pulled my blouse off over the top of my head and instructed Clark to sit on the floor in front of the chairs.

Knowing that my ‘figure four’ had a decent amount of crushing force, I thought I’d start there. It wasn’t my strongest scissor hold, but much like playing poker, I wanted to create some assumptions and illusions first. I liked to tease my boys and start out with about sixty percent of full-strength capacity before I started to really bring the pain.

On the same outdated low-pile carpet that was in my college dorm, Clark sat cross-legged with his back to the row of chairs as I laid across them on my side, facing towards the back of his head. Like a python, I slithered my bottom leg around the front of his body and gently put his neck in the fold of the back of my knee.

Similar to a ‘rear naked choke’, the figure-four was set up and executed in the same way but instead of using arms, I’d use my legs. I had a few years of Jiu Jitsu training under my belt, and was poorly experienced in the art of submissions. If applied effectively, the blood flow from the left and right carotid arteries which supply the head with oxygenated blood, are cut off and render the person unconscious.

After strategically placing my bottom leg around Clark’s neck, I took my top leg and placed the back of my knee around the foot that was coming off the leg that was around his neck. I started to lightly apply some pressure by pulling my top leg down which was acting like a lever, and as anticipated, Clark immediately grabbed onto the leg wrapped around his neck with his hands.

I knew it took roughly seven seconds to knock someone unconscious once they were in my grip. If I were to keep applying force beyond those seven seconds, the likelihood of creating an increased chance of brain damage and/or death, would start ticking over quickly.

After a few seconds, I let up on the pressure for Clark, but never let my legs leave his neck. Like a spider pulling a live fly further into her web, I dragged Clark backwards with my leg to get him closer to the row of chairs. Now that I was warmed up and we were well on our way, I was ready to play ball. I needed to get his neck deeper in my leg grip so I could squeeze tighter.

As I felt the side of my crotch make contact with the ice-cold metal of the chair, I wondered who or what had previously been touching the surface. Laying and rolling around on disgusting, potentially disease-infested surfaces never stopped me before, and it certainly wasn’t going to stop me now. The need to be the best, the need to win, and “I needed the money” always won whenever it came time for me to consider my actions or possible consequences.

So what?
I’m not sitting in the spotless Oval Office getting my dick sucked like Clinton had originally planned, but I’m pretty sure I’m making more money than Obama right now.
Not sure which one of us has a more stressful job, but whatever.
If I made it this far without my vagina falling off, I’m sure it’ll be fine that my private parts are smashed up against some shitty folding chair right now.

I always used the extra sheet stashed in the closet of the hotel when I was wrestling. Whether it was arm wrestling or wrestling, body parts rarely touched the carpet. However, I can’t say the same when it came to lying on airport floors when I was on tour and had to find a way to sneak a workout in. Looking good and getting attention was more of a priority than the possibility of what diseases could be entrenched in high foot-traffic carpets.

The fear of laying down on his own carpet without a sheet never crossed Clark’s mind because he never saw it coming. Neither one of us did, actually. But that’s how my life kept playing out. Even when I’m right in the middle of the shit, and there’s a quiet whisper telling me, ‘you’re not a tree, move bitch!’, I’d still stay stuck because I never saw it coming. I was always moving too fast, worrying about all the wrong things.

With the perfect amount of leverage and torque, I had him right where I wanted him. Intentionally blowing hot air, I leaned in and whispered in Clark’s ear, “You ready to experience sheer, unfathomable fear little boy?”. Before he could as much as nod his head, I went straight to eighty percent and started squeezing my vice grip around his neck while waiting for him to tap, signaling that he’d had enough.

I started counting in my head.


Like someone with a megaphone in the bleachers, my mom’s voice blasted through and into my thoughts,

Don’t let me get to three, Kortney Kay!

Suddenly the sound of a loud “POP” cascaded through my ears.

Clark suddenly dropped his hands from my leg as his entire body went limp.

Impulsively, I extended my right leg to let all of the pressure off of my left leg which was still wrapped around his neck. Waiting for some kind of movement or sound, I lay on my side in paralysis contemplating if I had just snapped Clark’s neck. Dropping my legs off of him completely, I quickly sat up and shifted them on either side of his back and waited for him to move or make a sound.

With no movement or sound coming from him, I felt that familiar feeling of my heart dropping down to my anus.

As I looked around the room in an absolute panic, I felt my fate cracking down like the federal judge’s gavel whom I used to slap around.

Why the fuck was there a blue tarp on the floor again?
This can’t be happening. Not right now. Not ever.

Semi standing up with both arms under Clark’s armpits, I proceeded to gently lay him on his back before taking a knee.

Should I perform CPR?
Idiot- not on a fucking broken neck you moron!
Fuck what should I do?
Will I go to prison for unintentional manslaughter?
Should I call 9-1-1?
Roll him up in the blue tarp and dump the body?
This isn’t Dexter you fucking fool!

As I sat there holding back tears, the panic had fully set in. Similar to emailing a friend intimate details about something your mutual friend had shared after you promised to not share, to only realise you’d emailed the friend you were writing about on accident, I was suffocating in terror. Then, in an instant and like the second coming of Jesus Christ, Clark let out the loudest, most earth shattering snore I’d ever heard in my life.


Then another one. By the second snore, Clark had rabid looking foam collecting at the corner of his mouth. A few more seconds passed when miraculously, he slowly opened his eyes, and let out a sound.
”Huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuugh”, he gasped. “Where, where am I?”

Unlike my response to Adriana when she woke up from her blackout after flying off the highway at sixty miles per hour, I replied to Clark with a different tone of voice while stroking his head.

“Hi there,” I said sweetly while trying to play it cool. “How was your nap?”.
”It… it was incredible!”
“Yeah, I told you everything about me is incredible, Clark.”

As he looked up at me with glossy, dark brown eyes, I sat in a pool of brief gratitude before it was onto the next thing.
“Shall we get to crushing these watermelons?” I coyly asked.

. . .

I used to always find myself cursing whoever the hell this ‘Murphy’s law’ person was. My life events have consistently shown me that there are unexpected twists and turns at every corner. Being a control freak and always feeling like I need ‘a plan’, it seems that my higher power has decided to award me all sorts of opportunities to experience what it feels like to lose control, light my plans on fire, thus giving me a chance to practice going with the flow. Such as when you think you may have just snapped someone’s neck and potentially looking at twenty five to life for involuntary manslaughter.

Do the F*cking Work

Have you hated or currently hate parts of your body?

Where do you think the dislike (or hatred) for your body originated from?

Do you feel comfortable in your skin when you’re interacting with others but when you’re by yourself, the story changes? If so, what do you think started this?

In what ways do you identify with being a control freak?

Can you be sporadic and just whimsically decide to take a trip without having accommodations booked and gas stations planned out along the way?

What areas of your life are you constantly trying to control?
What would happen if you eased up on it?

Crushing It is a masterpiece memoir showing you how to take back your power and learn to love yourself no matter the odds. No more excuses. Kortney’s not only owning it, she’s wearing it and sharing it with pride. She has been there. She has suffered. She has triumphed. And now so can you.

By: Kortney Olson
Title: Lesson 9: Expect the Unexpected
Sourced From:
Published Date: Mon, 08 Feb 2021 07:47:45 +0000

At New Horizon Drug Rehab, we understand addiction. If you or a family member are afflicted with addiction or substance abuse we can help. We work with the top centers throughout the US to provide the best detox and addiction treatments available.

Call Now: (877) 747-9974

Raising Rock Bottom

Many people involved with treatment and recovery for substance use disorder used to believe that in order for someone to be ready to accept help, they first need to hit rock bottom — the point where they could sink no lower into the depths of their addiction.

Unfortunately, the opioid epidemic and the proliferation of dangerous synthetic opioids like fentanyl meant that for too many people, rock bottom was only found in the morgue. As the risks of dying from an overdose increased, more treatment centers advocated for a harm reduction model to treatment. This approach, which focuses on reducing the severe consequences of substance use, is designed to save lives.

What is a harm reduction model?

A harm reduction model rejects an all-or-nothing approach to sobriety. This approach is meant to meet people where they’re at, and to engage them with wellness and safety programs even if they’re not yet ready to get sober.

The National Harm Reduction Coalition operates on eight principals. They’re summarized as:

  • Accepting that drug use will happen
  • Acknowledging that some ways of using drugs are safer than others
  • Focusing on quality of life, rather than total abstinence, as a marker of success
  • Calling for services for people who use drugs
  • Involving people who use drugs in the development of policy around drug use
  • Seeking to empower people with information
  • Recognizing the role that systems of racism, classism and more play in drug use
  • Accepting the real, tragic consequences that drug use can have

It’s important to recognize that there’s not just one approach to harm reduction for people with substance use disorder. At its core, harm reduction is focused on keeping people safe, even when they’re not ready to abstain from drugs and alcohol. Needle exchanges and naloxone distribution are examples of harm reduction programs.

How does harm reduction affect treatment?

Treatment for drug or alcohol abuse is often focused on sobriety. However, underpinning that objective is the desire to keep people safe and alive. With that in mind, it’s easy to see how harm reduction principals can be incorporated into treatment.

Many people resist getting treatment for their substance use disorder because they aren’t ready to give up drugs or alcohol completely. Taking a harm reduction approach — without focusing on absolute abstinence as the only way to improve one’s life — can make people more willing to engage with treatment.

The benefits and drawbacks of harm reduction.

Harm reduction strategies are all aimed at keeping people alive. With stronger drugs available more widely, we can no longer wait for people to hit rock bottom before offering a hand — we need to help them avoid a deadly consequence of their addiction.

Total abstinence and sobriety is the best way to keep from the negative consequences of addiction. However, other steps can be taken to protect people before they’re totally sober.

A harm-reduction approach to treatment provides information and resources to people in a non-judgmental way. The person enrolled in treatment might focus on learning how to cope with stressors in a more healthy way. They might get treatment for underlying mental health conditions, or counseling for past traumas that are contributing to their substance abuse. They could connect with doctors and community resources that are able to help support sobriety.

In this way, a harm reduction approach empowers people, even those who are still using. It helps to give them the tools and resources that they need to make lasting change in their lives. Knowing that they have that support can make it less frightening to say yes to treatment.

Some people might, at first glance, see the harm-reduction approach as enabling. However, it’s not about encouraging a person’s substance use. Instead, the approach builds them up in order to encourage them to make changes. It also acknowledges the reality that too often, substance use disorder can be deadly. By raising rock bottom and helping someone even before they’re entirely sober, you very well could safe a life.

Learn more about Oceanside Malibu at Reach Oceanside Malibu by phone at (866) 738-6550. Find Oceanside Malibu on Facebook.

By: The Fix staff
Title: Raising Rock Bottom
Sourced From:
Published Date: Thu, 04 Feb 2021 08:55:09 +0000

At New Horizon Drug Rehab, we understand addiction. If you or a family member are afflicted with addiction or substance abuse we can help. We work with the top centers throughout the US to provide the best detox and addiction treatments available.

Call Now: (877) 747-9974

Techno-Punk’s Louisahhh Celebrates 21st Century Feminism and Sobriety

Called Techno’s next superstar by DJ Mag, Louisahhh expresses her musical liberation in her debut album, The Practice of Freedom. Walking in the footsteps of her uncompromising musical heroes Siouxsie Sioux and Shirley Manson, Louisahhh’s raw, anti-establishment message hopes to open the once bolted door to a fresh dawn of musical feminism. By embracing a new prototype of the “feminist submissive,” she willingly exposes her most vulnerable side to the modern punk scene and exclusionary club dance floors’ harsh glare.

Louisahhh believes she can play with the submissive female archetype, enjoying the raw sexuality of tradition while also being empowered and strong. She takes a dedicated stance to defend women’s innate rights anywhere in the world. Alongside her passionate feminism, Louisahhh does not shy away from expressing how sobriety is the cornerstone of her expression.

Indeed, being sober is what allows Louisahhh to venture into the darkest corners of her soul and come out of the shadows with a purity of creative expression. She does not shy from the naked truth in all its wonder and all its brutality. Soon that naked truth will be shared with the world: The Practice of Freedom can be preordered here in digital or album form.

In an exclusive interview with The Fix, Louisahhh details the role that sobriety plays in her creative process. She says, “Everything I do is working with the backdrop of addiction and recovery, not only in practical terms, like the things I do every day to stay clean and sober and sane, but also creatively. There are endless ways to frame, to navigate and to explore how this disease of addiction expresses itself and what healing looks like today. I’ve felt since early sobriety that getting to do this job, to exist in the sordid dens of nightlife as a recovered person, would mean grounding in and carrying the message as if my life depended on it, and I still believe that to be true.”

Produced by American musician, music video director, and photographer Vice Cooler, the inaugural release of The Practice of Freedom will commence on March 12, 2020 via the polysexual polymath label HE.SHE.THEY. Influenced by American alternative rock’s angst and honesty, Louisahhh’s music fights to provide an angry yet redemptive voice for her listeners, allowing them to revel in the intensity of both the dancefloor and the mosh pit. Nobody is excluded when she performs live.

Yet, Louisahhh, also known as Louisa Pillot, knows that performing in punk venues and dance clubs presents a danger to any sober human being. As she told mixmag in a 2017 interview, “It comes down to this: my sobriety is my responsibility and no one else’s. Drugs and alcohol are a part of my chosen career. There is no grey area: my recovery comes first and everything else falls into place. My recovery comes second and I’m fucked.”

Expressing this reality, Louisahhh utilizes barking dogs, industrial machines, and demonic screams on her dystopian anthem “Numb, Undone,” which will be released as the album’s first single. Beyond making her music, Louisahhh is committed to the craft of DJing, which earned her the cover of DJ Mag and mixes for Boiler Room, ID, DJ, NTS, and Electronic Beats. Explaining her success, Louisahhh says, “As far as I’m concerned, any success I have today is a direct result of this foundation stone of sobriety, and I am happy to say that it’s a really good deal.”

Complementing her musical explorations, she currently hosts a podcast series called Sober Sex with friend Rose Romain on Apple Podcasts, delving into questions of sexuality and creativity. In all arenas, Louisahhh never backs down from her authenticity. As it states on her Facebook artist’s page, she is “raw coal thrown at a wall still burning.” In her music and her recovery, she does not fear the primal flames.

By: John Lavitt
Title: Techno-Punk’s Louisahhh Celebrates 21st Century Feminism and Sobriety
Sourced From:
Published Date: Tue, 02 Feb 2021 08:08:59 +0000

At New Horizon Drug Rehab, we understand addiction. If you or a family member are afflicted with addiction or substance abuse we can help. We work with the top centers throughout the US to provide the best detox and addiction treatments available.

Call Now: (877) 747-9974

Teen Vaping Remains High

Teenagers are vaping marijuana and nicotine at alarming rates. That’s the finding from the most recent Monitoring the Future survey of substance use behaviors among adolescents. The survey is sponsored by the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan. Each year students in eighth, tenth and twelfth grades are asked about their use of substances and their perception of drug availability and risk.

The percentage of high school seniors vaping marijuana increased from nearly ten percent in 2017 to twenty-two percent in 2020 and the rate among sophomores jumped from eight percent to nineteen percent. About eight percent of eighth graders are vaping marijuana.

Nicotine vaping is also increasing at alarming rates. Over thirty percent of sophomores and seniors vape nicotine. The National Institute on Drug Abuse believes “The rapid rise of teen nicotine vaping in recent years has been unprecedented and deeply concerning.” Apparently, teens have switched from smoking cigarettes to vaping nicotine. Cigarette smoking among teens “has dropped at least four-fold since the mid-1990s and is at or near historic lows.”

Marijuana is the most widely used illicit substance among adolescents. Daily marijuana use “defined as use on 20 or more occasions in the past 30 days by any method, significantly increased in 10th and 8th grade”. In 2020, eleven percent of eighth graders used marijuana while twenty-eight percent of sophomores and thirty-five percent of seniors used it.

How students perceive the risk associated with smoking marijuana has changed significantly over the past decade. In 2009, over half of seniors believed smoking marijuana regularly involved a great risk. Today, only thirty percent believe regular use involves great risk. A similar trend was found with eighth and twelfth graders.

The percentage of students who disapprove or strongly disapprove smoking marijuana has also changed over the past decade. In 2010, 84 percent of eighth graders disapproved smoking marijuana regularly. Today, only 76 percent disapprove. Disapproval declines as students grow older. The 76 percent disapproval rate among eighth graders falls to 67% when they become seniors

Alcohol remains the most widely used substance by teens. In 2020, one in five eight graders, forty percent of sophomores and fifty-five percent of seniors reported drinking alcohol. Although these percentages are high, they are much lower than from 2000 to 2010. Binge drinking is down by more than half since reaching peak levels in the 1990s. Also, only twenty-four percent of seniors believe taking one or two drinks of alcohol every day involves great risk and only thirty-six percent believe having five or more drinks once or twice each weekend involves great risk.

Eighth graders increased their use of over-the-counter cough medicine during the past five years, from about 2 percent to almost five percent in 2020. That’s the highest rate since 2006. There has also been an increase in inhalant use among eighth graders. Its use increased to six percent. As students grow older their use of inhalants declines. While 6% of eight graders use inhalants, only one percent of senior do so. Inhalant use among seniors was at an all-time low in 2020. Sadly, only about fifty percent of eighth graders believe regular inhalant use is harmful.

Among other drugs, about four percent of seniors are using LSD, three percent use cocaine, about two percent use OxyContin without a doctor’s order and four percent use Adderall without a doctor’s order. Three percent of sophomores and seniors use OTC/Cough/Cold medicine without a doctor’s order.

Apparently, it’s not difficult for today’s teen to find the alcohol or drugs they want. Nearly eighty percent of seniors believe it’s fairly easy or very easy for them to find marijuana. Over eighty-one percent said it’s easy to get alcohol or a vaping devise. Among the more “hard core” drugs, twenty-nine percent of seniors believe it’s easy to obtain LSD, twenty-eight percent said getting cocaine is easy, and twenty-four percent believe it’s easy for them to get ecstasy.

Alcohol and marijuana continue to be popular substances among today’s teens while rates of vaping nicotine and marijuana have increased to “markedly high levels.” Researchers believe “New efforts are needed to protect youth from using nicotine during adolescence – and in particular nicotine vaping – when the developing brain is particularly susceptible to permanent changes from nicotine use and when almost all nicotine addiction is established.”

By: Richard Capriola
Title: Teen Vaping Remains High
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Published Date: Wed, 27 Jan 2021 07:00:06 +0000

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