Sunday, June 12, 2011

Summer vacation and the dangers regarding drug abuse

My daughter, a teacher by education, left a comment on the post Summer vacation- to learn or not learn :
"I say that children should be allowed not to do anything at all. That is why it is called a vacation, because all the time is vacated. "
I fully agree with her, I never demanded of my children to learn during the holidays, but I carefully obsereved their behavior and socialization.
One of the greatest dangers lurking during the holidays is the encounter with drugs. For this reason, I am copying an article from the site stopdrogama. I thing everyone should read it carefully.

Summer break and the danger to children and minors regarding drug abuse
(Current issue is dedicated to parents and guardians)
Summer vacation has begun, and many children are looking forward to leisure time and fewer obligations. For this reason, the summer months present new challenges for parents. According to certain studies that had been made by US national agencies and those of some European countries, a large number of children and teenagers try marijuana in summer, especially July and August, when the number of children who first tried marijuana is bigger than during the rest of the year.


The question is how to prevent children try marijuana or other drugs during the summer. We suggest a few simple tips:


1. Set ground rules: Let the world know your child that smoking marijuana is unacceptable. Two thirs of children and juveniles (according to the studies) said that harassment of their parents or losing the respect of family and friends is one of the main reasons why they did not try marijuana or other drugs. Set rules of conduct with clear consequences if they are violated. Praise and reward all good behavior.
2. Show understanding and talk with your children: Before beginning a conversation with your child, learn the facts about marijuana and other narcotic drugs. When you talk with your child, talk about the harmful effects of using marijuana and other drugs, particularly health, social, mental health problems that occur after use of marijuana and other drugs.
3. Make sure to know where your children are at any moment, what they are doing and with whom at that point. Studies have shown that children and minors that are not constantly supervised are three times more prone to using marijuana and other drugs. Minors who do not have constant supervision of parents are more prone to risky behaviors such as drinking alcohol, unsafe sex or cigarette smoking.
4. Make sure to know who your child’s friends are. Try to get to know parents and friends of your child, inviting them to dinner or other appropriate home activities. Be in constant contact with your child's friends parents, as well as teachers, coaches and other persons who exercise any control over your child.
5. The first warning signs of drug use are distancing from family and existing friends, going out with a new circle of friends, the decline of interest for personal appearance, as well as changes in dressing style, eating and sleeping habits.
6. Support your child in the summer activities: Include your child in a variety of educational programs (courses in computer literacy, foreign languages), sports and other positive activities. Studies have shown that children and juveniles who are involved in various constructive activities supervised by adults are less prone to drug use.
7. Reserve time for family. Spend time together as a family.

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