Category: prevention

  • DARE – Drug Abuse Prevention that doesn’t work

    DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) is the largest school-based drug abuse prevention program in the United States. 80% of school districts across the country teach the DARE curriculum, reaching an estimated 26 million children (1). Every year, over $1 billion goes into keeping the program running. A billion dollars may be a small price to […]

  • Saving lives made easy – Treating opiate overdose with intranasal naloxone

    Contributing co-author: Andrew Chen Imagine that you and your friend have been using heroin (or another opiate). A few hours go by and you notice your friend is progressively becoming more and more unresponsive. You check on him and find that his breathing is shallow, his skin is cold, and his pupils are constricted. You […]

  • Two Million Dollars a piece – The cost of drug use and violence

    The average cost to society of a lifelong criminal = About $2 million I’ll get into more of this in later posts (I already talked about the cost of addiction prevention versus treatment versus enforcement), but if that cost of drug use and violence doesn’t cry out for a better application of money to prevention […]

  • About Addiction: Prescription drugs, Alcohol prices, and prevention among teens

    You know you care about addiction, and you know you love reading addiction news and research – A3 does it all for you and gathers things up in a nice little package we call our weekly “about addiction” post. It’s the fastest way to get the information you want, even if you didn’t know it […]

  • Black tar heroin – Pure Death

    Back in the 70s, heroin was mostly filler, and the good stuff was 5% pure or so. Nowadays a new, more potent, version of the stuff is killing people all around the country with widely varying purities as high as 90%. What makes black tar dangerous When heroin was weak, shooting it was the best […]

  • Addiction stories: Alcohol, marijuana, crime, and John’s life

    The following story was shared by a young reader. I was first drawn to it because it mirrored mine to a large extent. Fortunately, John decided to pull out before he let his life go down as far as I allowed myself to go. For that, and for his courage in sharing his story, I applaud him. John’s […]

  • Enforcement Vs. Prevention and Treatment – Solving our addiction problem requires all three

    The U.S. policy regarding the drug problem is still centered mainly on the enforcement of its drug laws and intervention in the drug supply both within the U.S. and in neighboring countries. There is no question that this “crusade” has had an impact. Importing a kilogram of cocaine into the US costs approx $15000 (an […]

  • And the winner is… Cocaine: The US-Mexico drug war.

    This post is based on an amazing broadcast I heard on KPCC, a local NPR radio-station; the story was part of Zocalo radio. In the story, Dr. Josh Kun spoke about the struggles of the war on drugs and the recent massive casualties on the southern side of the border. I had talked about this […]

  • The context of my addiction – Environmental effect on drug use???

    When most people think about addiction, they imagine a person completely unable to control their cravings, always wanting the thing they’re addicted to. That was certainly my experience throughout most of my addiction. So what happens when you just can’t have it? What happens when drug use is just not allowed? What happens if your […]

  • Take Charge of your Life: Another adolescent substance abuse prevention program that doesn’t work.

    In a previous post we talked about the ineffectiveness of the school-based substance abuse prevention program called D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistance Education). We reported data from a meta-analysis of 11 studies which showed no significant effect of D.A.R.E. in reducing drug use. A recently published study examined the effectiveness of another school-based program called Take […]