The student news site of Great Bend High School

Panther Tales

The student news site of Great Bend High School

Panther Tales

The student news site of Great Bend High School

Panther Tales

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Substance Abuse in Teens


As teenagers in high school we are aware that kids our own age abuse substances like nicotine, an example. Vaping has become one of the more popular addictions in teens as well as adults, but we’re just kids, is there anything we can do at our age to prevent or even stop this? 

Sophomore Jessie (JJ) Grove, freshmen Jackson Leiker, Beth Hammeke, and juniors Lakyn Carroll, and Jasmine Figueroa all stated that they do know of someone underage who has or is currently using substances. 

“Of course, I mean we are in high school there are tons of people doing that type of stuff,” stated Figueroa.

They all know substance abuse can affect teen’s futures. Carroll stated, “I feel like it can be very detrimental, and you can get roped in really easily because it’s everywhere and it is tempting for sure.” 

“It can cause a lot of problems for them in the future and affect their future by getting addicted and losing a lot of money to those types of things,” stated Grove.

“I think that could be a very bad thing because I have seen the effects it can have on people and it’s not good,” stated Hammeke. 

How can we stop this from happening though? “Prevention. Prevention is knowledge and knowledge is power, so knowing how it’s going to affect you,” stated Figueroa 

Carroll continued this thought, “Yes, definitely just learning about it and not hiding it, the schools need to preach about how bad it is for kids and bring more knowledge and awareness to it.”

“Not necessarily bag checking but at the middle school bathrooms they have detectors before you walk into the bathroom so I think at least at the high school we could use those,” stated Hammeke

These students were mostly aware of the effects that drugs can have on a person’s life especially at a young age and in their developmental years. Leiker stated, “Yeah it’s a big deal definitely; overdoses are very high in teens, the amount of aggression for example attacking cops and parents is very high when the brain is under the effects of the drugs.” He continued, “It can affect their brain, their lungs, they will think differently and act differently, they will be more aggressive in their behavior.”

Yes, It’s good that our students here at Great bend High School are aware of the effects drugs have on them and their futures but all students agreed that there needs to be more prevention work being done. The school does a great job already with the prevention of these substances but we need to be taught more in specifics about the way it can affect our lives and our futures. We need to be taught more about the health side of abusing these substances, and while yes we do know some of what the effects are, we do not know enough to keep the students from doing it. As Figueroa stated, “Prevention. Prevention is knowledge and knowledge is power.”

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