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Crucial conversations: how to talk to your teen about drugs

Psychiatrist Dr Owen Bowden-Jones explains why starting discussions about drugs early can be crucial when it comes to educating your teens on the dangers of legal and illegal highs.

DISCOVERING your child is taking drugs is every parent's nightmare, and most would go to great lengths to ensure illegal substances – or even legal highs – are never part of their child's world.

But ongoing conversations about drugs with children, starting well before the age they're likely to first be offered them, may be all it takes to prevent experimentation.


Psychiatrist and addiction expert Dr Owen Bowden-Jones, who's written a book called The Drug Conversation to help parents navigate the thorny issue, explains:


More US Adults Are Using Marijuana as They Don't Think It's Harmful

AN INCREASING NUMBER of US adults are using marijuana, as fewer people perceive the drug as harmful, according to a survey of over 500,000 people.

The study analysed data from 596,500 adults who took part in the annual US National Survey on Drug Use and Health from 2002 to 2014.

Marijuana use (defined as having used marijuana in the previous year) increased from 10.4% in 2002 to 13.3% in 2014. The proportion of adults who first started using marijuana in the previous year increased from 0.7% in 2002 to 1.1% in 2014.

The prevalence of daily or near daily use (defined as people who use marijuana, on average, five days or more per week) increased from 1.9% to 3.5% over the same period.


Record Rise in Seizures of Cannabis Smuggled in Post Across South Africa and Spain​

Customs & Excise report 10-fold increase with most from South Africa and Spain. 

The number of cannabis seizures being made in the Republic’s postal service has reach record levels.

Customs & Excise officers have seen a near 10-fold increase in seizures in the last five years and, despite that level of growth, seizure numbers almost doubled last year.

The vast majority of seizures involve herbal cannabis being imported into the State via the postal service from Spain and South Africa.

Security sources believe while some of the finds belonged to gangs experimenting with smuggling routes to test how effective searching in the postal system is, most of the finds result from orders for the drug placed online.


Ireland to Host The Trinity Summit 2016

The Trinity Summit: Advancements in the Age of Cannabis

Dublin | 14th September 2016

The Trinity Summit will bring together world experts from science, public policy, business and campaigning to explore emerging new innovations in medical cannabis.

VolteFace and Help Not Harm are curating the biggest global medical cannabis event of the year, in Dublin, on the 14th September. We are hosting leaders and major stakeholders in the area of medical cannabis to discuss the innovations and developments that are changing the trajectory of this global debate.


Cannabis remains Ireland's illicit substance of choice

It’s a substantial increase on 2015’s 60.8% user rate and proves that when it comes to drug taking we’re actually a pretty conservative bunch.

That cannabis supplies are abundant is evident from the fact that resin now costs an average €18.30 per gram as opposed to last year’s €25. Even so, Irish cannabis is still among the most expensive in the world with only Norwegians (€22.80) and Canadians (€31.60) having to pay more to indulge.

Skunk will set you back an average €23.10 per gram.

Despite its prevalence, only 1.7% report seeking emergency medical treatment as a result of their cannabis use.


Ireland: 'Cannabis Oil Could Control My Daughter's Seizures but I'm Not Allowed to Bring It into the Country'

Ava Barry has to endure hundreds of seizures every year. Unfortunately, most modern medicines fail to control the episodes. Her worried parents tell our reporter they believe a cannabis oil, not available here, may hold the key.

Vera Twomey and Paul Barry are absolutely terrified that their gorgeous little girl will die if she doesn't get a particular drug that has not yet been approved in Ireland.


Medical Marijuana Attracts Families To US As International Pot 'Refugees’

Hundreds of families throughout the world have been drawn to Colorado to seek medical marijuana treatment for their children's ailments. These parents and their kids, dubbed “international medical marijuana refugees,” travel thousands of miles in an attempt to procure what they say are lifesaving elements, the Guardian reported Monday.


Expots: medical marijuana draws parents to US for their children's treatments

Tristan Forde used to experience as many as 20 seizures a day. The two-year-old has Dravet Syndrome, a rare form of epilepsy, and was forced to constantly wear a helmet – suffering seizures so frequently that his three-year-old brother would automatically go to the freezer and get an ice pack every time Forde had an attack.

Everything changed, however, when Forde began medical cannabis treatment last year. He went months without suffering a single seizure, said Yvonne Cahalane, Forde’s mother. “For the first time, it looked like there was a sparkle in his eyes. It sounds corny, but he just looked so much brighter.”


Will Legalising Cannabis Extend Prohibition?

The inexorable momentum towards cannabis legalisation has taken hold across the globe. New, courageous policies are emerging in all corners of the earth – from Uruguay to Canada, from Ireland to Germany, a wave of positive reforms are being passed or pondered over by policymakers. 


Biotech Breakup: What is the Impact on Biotech Stocks focused on Cannabis?

The termination of the $160 billion merger between Pfizer Inc. (PFE) and Allergan Plc (AGN) has been confirmed.

The driving factor behind this decision stems from the rules issued by the United States Treasury Department which are focused on making tax inversion deals less profitable.

Moving Addresses, Not Assets

President Obama said the rules are meant to limit one of the most indirect tax loopholes available and prevent companies from decreasing their tax liability.

The reason why this deal came under such scrutiny is not only due to the size of the deal, but also its structure.


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