What is a drug?
A substance that can change the way a person acts, thinks, or feels.
Not all drugs are bad. Some drugs help us when we are sick, or when they are prescribed by a trained medical professional.
Drug abuse is when drugs are taken in a way that can cause harm. This harm can be physical, emotional, legal, social, or economic.
Why do people use drugs?
By understanding the reasons for drug use, we can learn how to say no and how to get help.
There are many reasons why someone chooses to use drugs:
- Because I’m told not to.
- Because I want to forget.
- I like the images.
- I can’t stop.
- I’m curious.
- I feel pressure from my friends.
- I want to fit in.
- I’m so stressed out.
"When we started high school, my friends and I thought that it would be fun to try new things. Not always good ones..."
"After a while, we got caught up in always looking for the next fun thing to do. It became less about having fun with ourselves and more about the fun created using substances.
I started to question if these people were really even friends anymore. Would we be friends if we weren’t always having fun? That’s when I decided to talk to someone, and start making some different choices."
of people tried alcohol for the first time at 4 years old.
of youth who have tried marijuana did so at 14 years old.
How can I say no?
Ever heard the phrase “practice makes perfect”?
Here’s your chance to learn and strengthen your refusal skills for when you may need them.
- Make an excuse.
- Blame your parents, coach, or school for why you can’t.
- Use humour.
- Suggest another activity.
- Decline for “today.”
- Leave the group and rejoin them later.
- Be confident and use “I” statements: “I don’t
feel like this is for me. I’m good.”
Who can get help?
Everyone. Whether you use drugs, or are affected by someone’s drug use, there are people at school who can help.
Substance Use Liaisons are Surrey School District staff available for all students to access. They can help you make a change with your drug use, or if you need support dealing with someone else’s drug use.
Want to know more?
Above the Influence
Get the facts on drugs, and read stories and experiences from other youth.abovetheinfluence.com
Here to Help
Read information to help you and other family members manage and understand mental health and substance use problems.heretohelp.com
Learn about the dangers and risks of drugs and alcohol abuse from a fellow teen.drugfacts.ca