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Summer Safety

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Many Teens Try Drugs For the First Time In June and July

By Mica Moeller, ASAC Prevention Specialist

School is out! A time students look forward to all school year. Leisure time is important for our students to relax without the pressure of school for a couple of months. There are many activities for our youth to do this summer to promote health and well-being. However, we don’t want the added free time to lead to dangerous and destructive behavior.

The National Survey on Drug Use and Health has reported that more teens try drugs for the first time in June and July than any other months of the year. Two of the most common first-time drugs are marijuana and alcohol. Nationwide, more than 11,000 teens try alcohol and more than 4,500 teens try marijuana each day during these warm months!

With the lack of constant adult supervision and added free time, it might seem difficult to prevent our students from using substances over the summer break. Here are some tips to protect your children and reduce the likelihood of substance use.

  1. Add a healthy amount of structure. Some ideas are sending them to camp; signing them up for sports teams, music lessons, duties around the house, or other activities to keep them busy.
  2. Keep your medicine cabinets locked and take excess medication to a drop-off box. Also, store alcohol in an area your child does not have access to. Eliminating easy access is a huge way to reduce use.
  3.  Be mindful, and have open conversations with you child. Let them know your expectations and concerns as well as how to keep themselves safe.
  4. Seek out other prevention resources during the summer. One of those resources is contacting ASAC Prevention at 319-390-1884 or prevention@asac.us.

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