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Teen Vaping and Marijuana Use Rising, While Other Substance Use Declines: Study

By NFP on Oct 5, 2022 9:45:00 AM


The rate of U.S. teen vaping and marijuana use is on the rise, while their use of other substances including alcohol and cigarettes is declining, according to a new study.

Researchers tracking substance use trends among U.S. teens over the past 30 years found substance use has generally declined, except for overall marijuana use and vaping nicotine and marijuana, HealthDay reports.

The percentage of U.S. teens who said they had vaped nicotine in the past month increased from 7% to 17% between 2017 and 2019, the study found. Marijuana vaping rose from just over 3% to almost 10% during that time.

Rates of substance use were highest among teens who had a job or who spent a lot of time with friends, without adults around, the study found. Substance use was least likely to occur among teens who did not spend a lot of time around friends or who took part in sports or other structured activities.

“Years of research show that when young people are engaged in activities they enjoy and feel are meaningful, they have less reason to turn to substance use to soothe their boredom or seek sensation,” said Linda Richter, vice president of prevention research and analysis for Partnership to End Addiction, who was not involved in the study.

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Topics: drug trends prevention vaping red ribbon campaign
1 min read

Two Potent Illicit Substances are Increasing the Risk of Overdoses

By NFP on Sep 26, 2022 9:54:54 AM

_synthetic opioid

Two potent substances are increasingly being linked to overdoses, NBC News reports. One is a group of synthetic opioids called nitazenes, and the other is an animal tranquilizer called xylazine.

Nitazenes can be up to 10 times stronger than fentanyl, the article notes. Last week the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published a report that showed a fourfold increase in deadly overdoses linked to nitazenes in Tennessee in the last two years. No nitazene-related deaths were documented in the state in 2019. The following year, 10 such deaths were reported, and 42 were reported in 2021.

“Naloxone has been effective in reversing nitazene-involved overdoses, but multiple doses might be needed,” the CDC report said. The researchers noted, “Given their potency, raising awareness about nitazenes and implementing strategies to reduce harm through increased testing, surveillance, and linkage to treatment for substance use disorders are of vital importance.”

Addiction experts told NBC News that traces of the non-opioid animal tranquilizer xylazine is also showing up in fentanyl samples. Xylazine is often referred to as “tranq” or “tranq dope,” and can cause people to slip into a state of unconsciousness for hours.

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Topics: drug trends prescription drug abuse prevention red ribbon campaign
2 min read

DEA Warns of Brightly-Colored Fentanyl Used to Target Young Americans

By NFP on Aug 31, 2022 10:13:58 AM

Rainbow fentanyl m30

WASHINGTON – The Drug Enforcement Administration is advising the public of an alarming emerging trend of colorful fentanyl available across the United States.  In August 2022, DEA and our law enforcement partners seized brightly-colored fentanyl and fentanyl pills in 18 states.  Dubbed “rainbow fentanyl” in the media, this trend appears to be a new method used by drug cartels to sell highly addictive and potentially deadly fentanyl made to look like candy to children and young people.

“Rainbow fentanyl—fentanyl pills and powder that come in a variety of bright colors, shapes, and sizes—is a deliberate effort by drug traffickers to drive addiction amongst kids and young adults,” said DEA Administrator Anne Milgram. “The men and women of the DEA are relentlessly working to stop the trafficking of rainbow fentanyl and defeat the Mexican drug cartels that are responsible for the vast majority of the fentanyl that is being trafficked in the United States.”

Brightly-colored fentanyl is being seized in multiple forms, including pills, powder, and blocks that resembles sidewalk chalk. Despite claims that certain colors may be more potent than others, there is no indication through DEA’s laboratory testing that this is the case.  Every color, shape, and size of fentanyl should be considered extremely dangerous.

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is 50 times more potent than heroin and 100 times more potent than morphine.  Just two milligrams of fentanyl, which is equal to 10-15 grains of table salt, is considered a lethal dose.  Without laboratory testing, there is no way to know how much fentanyl is concentrated in a pill or powder. 

Fentanyl remains the deadliest drug threat facing this country.  According to the CDC, 107,622 Americans died of drug overdoses in 2021, with 66 percent of those deaths related to synthetic opioids like fentanyl.  Drug poisonings are the leading killer of Americans between the ages of 18 and 45.  Fentanyl available in the United States is primarily supplied by two criminal drug networks, the Sinaloa Cartel and the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG).

In September 2021, DEA launched the One Pill Can Kill Public Awareness Campaign to educate Americans about the dangers of fake pills.  Additional resources for parents and the community can be found on DEA's Fentanyl Awareness page.

If you encounter fentanyl in any form, do not handle it and call 911 immediately.


August 30, 2022
Contact: Media Relations
Phone Number: (571) 776-2508

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Topics: drug trends dea drug prevention drug use fentanyl