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NIDA Notes Articles: ABCD, Brain, Children, Pre-Teens and Teens

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Nonmedical Opioid and Heroin Use Among High School Seniors

April 2017

This study analyzed the use of use of nonmedical opioids and heroin use among 68,000 high-school seniors participating in the NIDA-funded Monitoring the Future Study between 2009 and 2013.

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Prevention Program Reduces Substance Use By Participants' Friends

January 2017

The Strengthening Families Program for Youth 10-14 (SFP10-14), an evidence-based intervention that reduces teen substance use, also reduced participants’ friends’ substance use. Two factors that accounted for the nonparticipants’ reductions were less time spent by nonparticipants with their participating friends without adult supervision and improvements in nonparticipants’ attitudes toward substance use. The findings suggest that researchers should consider the potential for diffusion of benefits in designing and implementing prevention programs.

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Study Questions Role for Marijuana in Teen Users’ IQ Decline

August 2016

In a recent study, teens who used marijuana lost IQ points relative to their nonusing peers. However, the drug appeared not to be the culprit.

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Sensation Seeking Promotes Initiation, Impulsivity Promotes Escalation of Substance Use

May 2016

Teens who avidly seek new and intense sensations are more likely to start using substances, but are not more likely to use them regularly within the next 3 years unless they also are prone to devalue distant consequences and act impulsively.

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Life Skills Training Shields Teens From Prescription Opioid Misuse

December 2015

Communities that implemented Life Skills Training in a trial more than recouped its cost in reduced health, social, and other expenditures related to teen prescription opioid misuse.

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Narrative of Discovery: Can Magnets Treat Cocaine Addiction?

September 2015

Two researchers share their reasons for researching transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) for treating cocaine addiction, and describe challenges to moving forward this potentially promising therapy.

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Why Take a Drug That No Longer Gives Pleasure?

September 2015

In mice, a cocaine-induced imbalance in the activity of two key populations of neurons in the reward system persists for a longer period after repeated exposure to the drug. For long-term users, this change could both weaken the cocaine “high” and strengthen the compulsion to seek the drug.

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THC Hampers Spatial Memory Development in Young Monkeys

September 2015

Adolescent monkeys that were exposed to THC fell progressively further behind THC-free monkeys in their ability to recall the location of an object after a brief delay.

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A Rapid Teen Substance Use Screening Tool for Clinicians

July 2015

Answers to three simple questions can help a busy health care provider flag a teen’s problematic use of alcohol, tobacco, or marijuana.

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Electronic Questionnaire Quickly Rates Teens’ Substance Use

July 2015

With a few simple questions, a new screening tool detects whether a teen is likely to have a mild-to-moderate or a severe substance use disorder.

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