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Level 1 English - 1.9 Internal: Research Skills - Teenage Drug Abuse

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Level 1 English - 1.9 Internal: Research Skills - Teenage Drug Abuse

Today we see the apparent problems of a lost youthful generation declining to the powerful persuasion and seduction of "the world of drugs". Why are young New Zealand teenagers under achieving in both their schooling and general lives? I found the most prominent answer and predictable culprit to be the naive and inexperienced decision common youth make to live a lifestyle of depraved drug abuse and heavy drinking. The aim of my research assignment is to answer the issue of drug abusive and who it affects; the problems it raises and the possible solution.

SAAD and Liberty Mutual, a coalition of youth aid organizations claim that many parents fear young people have easy access to alcohol, drugs and sex. Perhaps this serves as the reason for the heightened level of drug abuse among New Zealand teenagers. Drugs feed anger, frustration and sense of loss to the troubled mind of a user, encouraging addictive and often aggressive behavior. The internet provides numerous first hand accounts of drug using teenagers, with their reports of self destructive behavior and periods of continuous depressive condition. Why though has this issue become an obstacle for many teenagers?

The previously mentioned youth aid organization believes that there are a number of factors youth consider when contemplating drug usage. They further explained that a teenager's mental state can corner them into a position where they feel the need to fight depression, anxiety, stress, boredom and curiosity. Personal goals such as the aspirations to feel grown up, to fit in and take risks also push youth to a point where drug usage becomes an attractive choice. Additionally the potential outcomes of drug usage can have, to a large extent, effects on a person's actions. Are others doing it? What are the chances of getting caught? Many evaluate possibilities or rather the examples of others, reasoning and excusing their decision on the matter. On that thought I believe that it is significant people such as parents, friends, and siblings that influence teenagers to "have fun" and "feel good". It is from their example that youth learn to abuse themselves through heavy drug usage. This is not always the case however as many parents argue that they encourage their teenagers to communicate readily with them, discouraging drug abuse and other misguided decisions.

My research shows that teenagers who have had traumatic upbringings, such as unstable or divided homes where parents have separated or family members have abused them, may resort to drugs as an easy fix for their depressive and unpredictable moods. Teenagers who start this unruly cycle suffer in later life and struggle to escape their addictive tendencies. This issue of youth drug abuse raises a number of problems that affect individuals as well as communities. A special edition of the New Scientist magazine entitled "Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll" raises some of these problems to a forefront. They deem the long term effects of taking drugs as quite dangerous to younger undeveloped people. They claim that drugs can decrease fertility, damage unborn babies, lead to memory loss, generate schizophrenic conditions, induce depression and other illnesses. Often time's teenagers resort to drugs on the basis that they had these problems already, drugs just make it worse. The victim retains their illness and continues in a deteriorating condition. Not only is the individual affected, however communities in their entirety can be affected. Methamphetamines and some of the many "delusional drugs" available on the market today are known for the violence they can initiate. These powerful psycho-stimulants have over the past few years been responsible for outright brutal and unjustified killings. Many who fall victim to habits they need to support, especially intensive drug abusers, require large amounts of money to pay for the substance they are using. Most will breach all social and economic values of our country to get there, that includes the taking of people's lives and estates. These drug abusers are responsible for communication breakdown within society, and thus are labeled criminals. Teenage abusers are treated no differently. This important point leads me to strongly believe that the main problem associated with the abuse of drugs for youth, is the detriment it will have on their future as well as ours. As a small country of approximately 4,300,000 people we cannot afford to jeopardize our social and economic values for the sake of corporal companies that strive on the failure of our younger population to make educated decisions. Individuals are not achieving in life because of what drug abuse has done to their, financial, health and personal situations. What's worse is that teenagers are losing

their personal values. A Time Magazine issue dealing with the behavior of youth brought out an important point in the article "A Teenagers Trip". It stated "Teenage drug abusers will experience a loss of cause or reason to live their lives neglecting their necessities such as food, shelter, clothing and love. Teenagers typically develop withdrawal symptoms such as fatigue, depression, restlessness, irritability, mod swings and disturbed



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