Turn around and lead


For every minute you spend reading this article, approximately two U.S. adolescents abuse prescription drugs. The state of Oklahoma is ranked in the top ten for the highest percentage of prescription drug overdoses.


Due to recent events in the Ada school systems these statistics truly hit home. A young girl, whose name will not be identified for she is only a minor, was offered a very high number of a prescription drug called Alprazolam. The most common brand names for Alprazolam are Xanax or Niravam. This drug is normally prescribed to help  anxiety disorders, panic disorders and anxiety caused by depression. Taking Xanax or Niravam without the proper dosage sets a higher risk for the following: overdose, damage to the liver and kidneys, addiction, and accidents under the influence.

The young lady’s father spoke out on the social media app, Facebook, about the events that took place at the school on Sept. 11. Since the video, which was posted on Friday, Sept. 12 of 2015, has received over 12 thousand views. In the video her father pleads with students.

“I almost lost my daughter yesterday. She almost died. ‘Cause they think it’s cool to take these pills…Something you kids don’t understand, we adults won’t be around forever. You guys are the future of this country and of this town, and we’re gonna expire one day. Right now you are all followers, just following each other. One person does one thing then you wanna do it too. That is not ever going to lead to success in your lives.”

He explains that it doesn’t matter where she got the pills, but what does matter is that she made the decision to take a lot of them, and no one stepped up to have her back and tell her not to.

Pat Harrison, superintendent for the Ada school system, was interviewed by the Ada Evening News about events that happened that day.

“We’ll see where this ends up. But right now, we’re stuck worrying about a little girl, and hoping for the best for her and her family and doing everything we can to try and prevent something like this happening in the future,” said Harrison

With today’s society prescription drugs is more common than the abuse of cocaine, hallucinogens and heroin combined. In the United States alone, there are more than 15 million people that abuse prescription drugs between the ages 12-17.

“Oklahoma tops all states when it comes to non-medical use of painkillers… 8.1 percent of Oklahoman’s age 12 and older used painkillers for non-medical reasons…”

Chris Jagger published an article called The 25 Most Common Causes of Death on June 24, 2011. This article states that in an accidental poisoning or drug overdose the odds of dying are one in 139. For students in the Ada school system that are roughly between 12-17 years of age, approximately eight students out of 1,104 are likely to overdose at Ada High School.

For this reason, the school system has set up an anonymous hot line for students who have any information about a student that is using, has an obsession with, or  comes to school carrying drugs. If you know of someone who needs or is looking for help, text either Ada High School Help Line at (843) 642-HELP (4357) or Ada Junior High School Help Line at (724) 374-3571.

If you are not a member of the Ada school system but are looking for help please call 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or visit the online treatment locators.

Noticing and reporting early warning  signs of teen drug abuse could save a life.

Have you ever abused prescription drugs?

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Website: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/11/22/how-and-how-much-the-50-states-do-drugs-in-4-maps

Website: http://www.drugfreeworld.org/drugfacts/prescription/abuse-international-statistics.html

Website: http://www.axisresidentialtreatment.com/xanax-addiction/dont-need-it/

Website: http://www.odmhsas.org/stateofaddictionc%20(2).pdf

Website: http://www.medhelp.org/general-health/articles/The-25-Most-Common-Causes-of-Death/193?page=3