What can be done to prevent steroid abuse?
Most prevention efforts in the United States today focus on athletes involved with the Olympics and professional sports; few school districts test for abuse of illicit drugs. It has been estimated that close to 9 percent of secondary schools conduct some sort of drug testing program, presumably focused on athletes, and that less than 4 percent of the Nation's high schools test their athletes for steroids. Studies are currently under way to determine whether such testing reduces drug abuse.
Research on steroid educational programs has shown that simply teaching students about steroids' adverse effects does not convince adolescents that they can be adversely affected. Nor does such instruction discourage young people from taking steroids in the future. Presenting both the risks and benefits of anabolic steroid use is more effective in convincing adolescents about steroids' negative effects, apparently because the students find a balanced approach more credible, according to the researchers.
This series of reports simplifies the science of research findings for the educated lay public, legislators, educational groups, and practitioners. The series reports on research findings of national interest.