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These people started using drugs as children but turned their lives around

May 2, 2021. Summarized by summa-bot.

Compression ratio: 21.7%. 2 min read.

People who started using opioids as children share their stories to help children and parents get educated about the risks of drug abuse.

It was the start of a rocky journey that Liller, now 40, said took her to many dark places and made her a very different person.

An estimated 1. 6 million people in the US ages 12 and older have an opioid use disorder, according to a Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration survey on drug use and health from 2019, the most recent year for which data is available.

An estimated 10. 1 million people misused prescription opioids, 745,000 people have used heroin, and 70,630 people died of a drug overdose in 2019, according to the US Department of Health and Human Services.

By the time she was in high school, Liller said she had experimented with several drugs, including cocaine.

She said parents also need to reach out to their children and be patient and open-minded.

Morrow said initially she started using drugs out of curiosity and because she wanted to fit in with her friends.

"My long-term plan was to complete the program and then go right back to using drugs," she said.

Now she's a prevention education specialist with the non-profit Your Choice to Live, working with parents and children on drug prevention.

Life can sometimes be hard, Morrow said, but drugs or alcohol will not solve those problems.

Darbaker said he spent years getting into legal trouble and being thrown into jail systems because he couldn't break away from the "grips of addiction. " He is now 24 and in recovery and in a long-term relationship.

She said when children make the choice to use drugs, they don't realize it hurts siblings, parents, grandparents and friends.

Grisel, who is also the author of "Never Enough: The Neuroscience and Experience of Addiction," says children who have had trauma or a lot of stress sometimes use alcohol and drugs to escape those situations, which results in them eventually becoming dependent on those substances.

"The quickest way to fix this is to come up with ways to help children cope with stress and find developmentally appropriate ways for trying new things and taking risks," she said.

by summa-bot

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