In the past few years, young people have become more and more willing to risk their health for the potential of getting good grades. With the college admissions process becoming much more competitive than in previous years, students are turning to prescription drugs to help them study for extended periods of time. This can cause some students to form chemical dependencies to these drugs, and do not allow them to learn at a normal, healthy pace. If you know a student who is thinking about using drugs to help them study, or know someone who is already addicted to these types of prescription pills, it is very important that you talk them into seeking help at an addiction treatment program.
With the economy still teetering on the brink, going to college has become more important than ever for young people if they want to have a good chance at a lucrative career. This has led to extremely competitive admissions standards for colleges and universities around the country. For a student to receive a scholarship they must possess impeccable grades. Unfortunately, too many students are now willing to risk their health and lives in order to obtain these grades. Students are taking a variety of different stimulants to help them stay up later and study longer. This can have very severe consequences for the development of a young person’s brain and body.
“Children have prefrontal cortexes that are not fully developed, and we’re changing the chemistry of the brain,” says Paul Hokemeyer, family therapist at the Caron Treatment Center in Manhattan. “It’s one thing if you have a real deficiency – the medicine is really important to those people – but not if your deficiency is not getting into Brown.” Since 2007, the number of young people who have been prescribed ADHD drugs has risen 26%. This is a staggering figure, as there is no way that many young people have disorders that would require that kind of drug. These kids are becoming addicted to the effects of these substances, and are not able to function without them after a certain period of time.
Getting into a good college gives young people many different advantages. However, the benefits of having a college degree do not outweigh the potential health disasters that can befall a young person if they develop an addiction to prescription drugs. These “academic steroids” are causing much debate in the medical community. Many parents are enabling their children to get these prescription drugs so that they can have a better chance of getting into a good college. However, people in the medical community are waking up to the fact that the majority of teens who are prescribed these drugs do not really need them. It is important that we continue to educate parents and children about the potential dangers that these types of prescription drugs can have, and that no college scholarship is worth damaging your brain for.