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Fun Family Prevention Activities

Posted by Informed Families on March 31, 2020 at 8:56 PM

It’s National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week, a week focused on connecting teens with science-based facts about drugs and alcohol.

Here are some more fun ways your family can participate in National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week:

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Topics: parenting, education, positive parenting, teenagers, family bonding, teens, nida, drug use, parents, alcohol use, juul, vaping

National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week 2020

Posted by Informed Families on March 23, 2020 at 8:00 AM

According to the 2019 Monitoring the Future Survey:

  • Marijuana continues to be the most commonly used illicit drug by adolescents.
  • One in four 12th graders say they vaped nicotine in the past month, along with 1 in 5 10th graders, and nearly 1 in 10 eighth graders.
  • Many teens say they vape for the flavor, to experiment, for social reasons, or to feel good.
  • From 2018-2019, the number of 12th graders saying they vape because they are "hooked" more than doubled to 8.1%, up from 3.6%.

Parents and educators can join others across the country to help students make informed decisions by sharing fact-based information about drugs and alcohol.

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Topics: drug, alcohol, teens, nida, drug prevention, drugs, drug use, alcohol use, vaping

A Dangerous Mix: Spring Break and Underage Drinking

Posted by Informed Families on March 6, 2020 at 1:16 PM

We’ve all seen the headlines:

“Underage drinking, drugs leads to nearly 1,000 arrests on Gulf Coast beaches”

“Sheriff's Office cracks down on underage drinking in Destin”

“Police being extra vigilant on drunk driving during spring break

"Spring Break 2019 sees drunk students descend on beach to guzzle booze, twerk and pass out in outrageous parties”

If you are the parent of a college-age student preparing to head off to a spring break destination soon, you are likely concerned about whether or not they will engage in underage or binge-drinking and wind up in lots of trouble.

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Topics: positive parenting, college students, underage drinking, alcohol, teens, binge drinking, samhsa, alcohol use, alcohol abuse

Give 'Dry January' a Try

Posted by Informed Families on January 10, 2020 at 3:44 PM

Are you thinking about participating in ‘Dry January’ - a month-long break from alcohol? We already know giving up alcohol for a month could leave you richer, slimmer and healthier – but if you’re in need of some more reasons to maintain your break with Pinot, check out some of the unexpected benefits of giving up alcohol

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Topics: tips, alcohol, alcohol use

President's Message - January 2020

Posted by Peggy B. Sapp, President & CEO on January 2, 2020 at 9:00 AM

A New Year and A New Start    

Welcome, 2020! Cheers to the start of a new year and a new decade.

We are encouraged by the recent findings from the annual Monitoring the Future survey.  In the past year, the use of illicit drugs (other than marijuana) among 12th graders remains low. The misuse of prescription medicines and the use of alcohol and tobacco cigarettes continues to decline as well. However the number of youth vaping marijuana and nicotine is rising.

In the 1980s, we were fighting to keep our kids safe from cocaine, big tobacco and underage drinking. Today we are battling against opioids, vaping and binge drinking. The drug trends may change, but education and simple, clear communication remain key in keeping our youth healthy and drug free.

Informed Families has been fortunate to have such terrific partners help us spread our prevention messages. We are once again partnering with Publix to promote our Lock Your Meds campaign and messaging in all of their pharmacies this month. We are also working with the Florida Blue Foundation to increase awareness of the opioid epidemic and promote good mental health over the next three years.  

Informed Families will continue to deliver on our mission to educate, enable and empower students, parents and communities to work together to keep children healthy in 2020. We are off to a great start!

Peggy

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Topics: President's Message, drug trends, underage drinking, binge drinking, publix, drug free, drug prevention, nicotine, tobacco, drug use, opioids, alcohol use, mental health, vaping

President's Message - August 2019

Posted by Peggy B. Sapp, President & CEO on August 1, 2019 at 8:30 AM

Back to School Transitions Can Lead to Problems   

Hi friend,

Summer vacation is coming to an end, and your children will be returning to school soon. Some are preparing to transition into middle or high school; while others are heading off to college.  These transitions will introduce new environments, new friends and new found freedoms. Research shows that dealing with transitions is often a time when kids get into trouble. If you haven’t done so already, now is a good time to have another talk with your kids about your family rules and boundaries regarding underage drinking and substance abuse

You want to encourage your children’s growing independence, but set appropriate limits. Set clear rules, and then enforce the rules you set. Make sure your children understand what the consequences will be for breaking rules.  But equally important, don’t forget to acknowledge the moments when your kids choose healthy behaviors over underage drinking or experimenting with drugs.

According to a recent report, the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy’s (ONDCP) Drug-Free Communities (DFC) programs continue to yield consistently reduced youth substances use rates. There has been a decline in prescription drugs, marijuana, tobacco, and alcohol use among youth. So we know prevention programs and initiatives, like the ones Informed Families offer, work.  We all must continue to play a role in creating communities that care about helping kids grow up safe, healthy and drug free.

Peggy

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Topics: President's Message, college students, prevention, underage drinking, family rules, teens, peer pressure, drug use, parents, alcohol use, back to school

President's Message - June/July 2019

Posted by Peggy B. Sapp, President & CEO on June 28, 2019 at 11:00 AM

Let's End the Stigma Associated With Drugs   

The Surgeon General’s recent call to end the stigma associated with addiction is long overdue. The stigma surrounding alcohol and drug use and addiction often prevents us from talking openly about these issues with friends, family and most importantly our kids.

It’s much easier to avoid talking about tough topics, especially when we think “that could never happen to one of my loved ones.”  No one wants to believe their child is sneaking pills from the medicine cabinet or drinking while out with friends. No one wants to believe their child is experimenting with or using drugs.

The sad truth is that children as young as nine years old already start viewing alcohol in a more positive way, and approximately 3,300 kids, as young as 12 years old, try marijuana each day. Additionally, about five in 10 kids, as young as age 12, obtain prescription pain relievers for non-medical purposes.  Furthermore, the research shows that children who first smoke marijuana under the age of 14 are more than five times as likely to abuse drugs as adults than those who first use marijuana at age 18 (NIDA).

It is never too early to talk to your children about the risks of using alcohol and drugs. It may not always seem like it, but kids really do hear their parents say; talk they listen.

Peggy 

 

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Topics: President's Message, addiction, drug trends, marijuana, prescription drug abuse, teens, drug use, parents, alcohol use

President's Message - May 2019

Posted by Peggy B. Sapp, President & CEO on May 28, 2019 at 9:00 AM

Summer Is A Good Time to Refocus On Prevention  

Another busy school year is coming to a close and we are all looking forward to having some down time and reconnecting with family. The start of summer is a critical time to talk with your kids about risky behaviors. Teens and college students most often use substances for the first time during June or July, according to SAMHSA's National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) data on adolescents – 2012  and NSDUH data on full-time college students – 2015.

Unfortunately it’s not as easy for parents to recognize that their child might be experimenting with alcohol or drugs. JUUL e-cigarettes that look like USB flash drives, flasks disguised as lotion containers, sunscreen or smart phone cases, and CBD gummies can be hidden in plain sight. These items can all be purchased online. Talk to your kids about the dangers of using drugs or alcohol and arm them with the knowledge they need to make healthy choices. If you need some talking points take a look at these 11 Tips For Talking To Your Kids About Drugs & Alcohol

It might be hard to acknowledge if your child has a substance abuse problem. It’s also difficult to find help. Many parents often ask - what should I do if my child is dealing with an addiction or mental health issue? The good news is a newly proposed Comprehensive Addiction Resources Emergency (CARE) Act 2019 would help provide the infrastructure and community building that is are critical to getting them the care they need.

Peggy

 

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Topics: President's Message, parenting, college students, teens, peer pressure, e-cigarettes, drug use, parents, alcohol use, summer, healthy kids, juul

President's Message - April 2019

Posted by Peggy B. Sapp, President & CEO on April 26, 2019 at 3:00 PM

Communicating Across Generations 

I recently read that some families now have five living generations. Imagine that. Each generation has a totally different world view and processes information in a different way. However simply engaging with others remains the key to communicating effectively.

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Topics: President's Message, parenting, communication, safe homes smart parties, underage drinking, teens, peer pressure, parents, alcohol use, alcohol abuse

How Many Florida Children & Teens Drink Or Use Drugs?

Posted by Informed Families on September 25, 2018 at 2:17 PM

People make a lot of assumptions about what children and teens do or don't do when it comes to substance abuse. This can be based on the person's own experiences, what he or she sees on social media or in movies or what others may have experienced. Luckily, we don't have to assume, thanks to the Florida Youth Substance Abuse Survey (FYSAS) report, which was just released for 2018.

The FYSAS was administered to almost 55,000 Florida students in 686 middle and high schools in February of 2018.

Here are some highlights from the report:

  • Alcohol and cigarette use is declining. Between 2006 and 2018, past-month use of alcohol declined by 16.7 percent (11.7% for middle school students and 20.6% among high school students), binge drinking declined by 10 percent (5.3% for middle school students and 13.4% for high school students) and cigarette use declined by 8.1 percent (4.8% for middle school students and 10.6 percent reduction among high school students).
  • Binge drinking is still an issue. One out of every 10 high school students reported binge drinking in the last 30 days and one out of seven reported blacking out from drinking.
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Topics: children, drug abuse, teens, alcohol use

About Us

We teach people how to say no to drugs and how to make healthy choices. To reduce the demand for drugs, Informed Families has focused its efforts on educating and mobilizing the community, parents and young people in order to change attitudes. In this way we counteract the pressures in society that condone and promote drug and alcohol use and abuse. The organization educates thousands of families annually about how to stay drug and alcohol free through networking and a variety of programs and services .

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