Middle schoolers' arrests shed light on ADHD med abuse - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Students' arrests shed light on ADHD med abuse

Posted: Updated:
The incident in Crystal Springs is shining a light on the abuse of prescription drugs for Attention Deficit Hyper-activity Disorder. The incident in Crystal Springs is shining a light on the abuse of prescription drugs for Attention Deficit Hyper-activity Disorder.
CRYSTAL SPRINGS, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Patricia Ford says that when she picked up her granddaughter from school Friday, the Crystal Springs Middle School student was in a daze. Her condition is being blamed on an ADHD medication that was not prescribed to her.

As a result, Crystal Springs Police arrested five students and all of them have been charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance on School Property.

The incident in Copiah County is shining a light on the abuse of prescription drugs for Attention Deficit Hyper-activity Disorder. It's a problem that doctors who specialize in substance abuse say is plaguing adolescents and teens across the country.

The number of emergency room visits by patients needing treatment for adverse stimulant-related effects, but were not prescribed an ADHD medication increased drastically, according to the National Institute of Health's Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Data from the January issue of Drug Abuse Warning Network (DAWN), published by SAMHSA, indicated the most alarming climb came between 2005 and 2010, amongst 18-to-25-year-olds. ER visits increased from 2,131 to 8,148.

While the increase is not quite as steep in younger ages, the trend is still headed in the wrong direction, according to researchers. ER visits from children 12-to-17-years-old went from 2,702 in 2005 to 3,461 in 2010.

In 5-to-11-year-olds there were 3,322 ER visits in 2005 compared to 3,791 in 2010.

The National Institute on Drug Abuse's website states that ADHD medications, such as Adderall and Ritalin are abused for a myriad of reasons. They can offer academic and athletic performance enhancement, if pills are crushed and snorted it can create a "euphoric" effect, and it can also serve as an appetite depressant.

Taking ADHD meds without a prescription poses several adverse effects, such as: increased blood pressure, heart rate and body temperature, plus a decrease in sleep and appetite.

Like any other narcotic, the consequences of using the drugs are dire, but the numbers tell us that the use of these medications for non-prescription purposes is not going anywhere. A reality that Crystal Springs Police Captain Gerome LeFlore said the law enforcement community is coming to grips with.

"This is a problem that's not just here in Crystal Springs," LeFlore said. "It's a worldwide problem. It's a nationwide problem, and we're doing everything we can to fight against all of types of drug use. It's hurting our children."

Copyright 2013 MSNewsNow. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow