We envision a continuum that strives for an integrative system where prevention, treatment and recovery resources are available, accessible and acceptable to all within Strafford County

Prevention Tools

Addressing drugs and alcohol is tough. Arm yourself with some information and tools you can use in your home. We’ve chosen to focus on the three most common substances that youth are using:

Lifetime Use: 64.5%

Overall, underage rates have been declining since the 1980s, but underage binge drinking rates are on the rise.

What can parents do?

  • Talk with your child about drinking
  • Role model healthy drinking habits
  • Don’t send ambiguous messages about alcohol.
  • Don’t allow your child and their friends to party at your house because you think it’s safer
  • Lock and monitor your alcohol
  • Know your child and their friends

Stopping your child from drunk driving

  • It’s tempting for a teen who has been drinking to drive home drunk to make it home in time for curfew to avoid getting in trouble. It’s better to address this situation before it happens.
  • If you’re comfortable, institute an Amnesty Policy. Tell your child that if they call you because they are drunk and need a ride home, you will not punish them.
  • If this happens, honor your word and don’t punish your child. But have an honest conversation the next day when you’re both sober and better rested.

Emphasize trust, communication, and safety over punishment.

Lifetime Use: 42.1%

Marijuana is the most commonly used illegal drug, and the drug that teens think is the least dangerous.

Out of 100 Teens:

  • 42 Have used Marijuana
  • 29 Have used marijuana in the past month
  • 9 Began using marijuana before the age of 13

Marijuana Facts

  • Many people think that marijuana is a harmless drug and ignore the fact that it has some real side effects.
  • Marijuana is addictive. Studies have shown that regular users experience withdrawal symptoms.
  • Marijuana impairs judgment and hinders the user’s short-term memory.
  • Marijuana results in loss of coordination, poor sense of balance and decreased reaction time is associated with use, which is especially dangerous when driving
  • Marijuana has 4 times the amount of known cancer causing chemicals as cigarettes.
  • Marijuana complicates the problems for kids with depression and emotional illnesses. Recent research suggests that adolescent marijuana use can induce early stages of schizophrenia.
  • Marijuana can also result in slowed physical, mental, emotional and sexual development.
There is much less marijuana use where students report high parental monitoring. This includes such parental activities as:
  • Always knowing where your kids are; who they are with.
  • Insuring parents are home if kids are at a friend’s home.
  • Always being up when your kids come in at night so they know they will face you if they have been using marijuana or other drugs.
  • Being aware of risk factors and warning signs.
  • Being alert for “signs” when cleaning their room or doing laundry

Lifetime Use: 21.3%

About 40% of teens in the region do not think that using Rx drugs without a prescription is dangerous, even though 82% of the drug related deaths in NH were due to Rx drug abuse.

Prescription drug misuse is a growing trend in New Hampshire. You can take steps to prevent your child from joining this trend.

  • Of the 200 drug related deaths in NH in 2011, 82% of them were related to prescription drug abuse.
  • More people die in NH due to drug related complications than motor vehicle accidents.
  • While 19.5% of high school students overall in NH have misused prescription drugs, 21.3% of high school students in our region have misused prescription drugs.

What can parents do?

  • Talk to your children about drug and alcohol use.
  • Lock up medications; consider using a Medication Lock Box.
  • Throw Away medications, see instructions below.

How to Dispose of Prescription Drugs

Prevent poisonings, pollution, and drug abuse by getting rid of unneeded medication.

  • Pour medicine into a sealable plastic bag
  • Add some water to dissolve it
  • Add coffee grounds, kitty litter, or something absorb the liquid
  • Seal the bag and throw it away
  • Use a marker to blackout any personal information on empty medicine containers

Or you can check the DEA website to see if there is an upcoming National Take-Back Initiative. Then, you can check if your local police department is sponsoring one.

<< Back to Parental Resources

Back to Top