More teenagers are seeking treatment for drug and substance abuse.
What’s happening? At the Institute of Mental Health’s (IMH) Drug Treatment Clinic (DTC), doctors are seeing more teenagers being treated for drug abuse. Five years ago, this wasn’t the case. More teenagers are exposed to and experiment with alcohol, cannabis, and packaged tobacco.
- The DTC has been helping drug-dependent patients. The number varies from 200-250. Some are in the 12-20 age group and form about 10% of outpatients.
- The trend shows that school-going and adolescent teenagers use illicit drugs. Some of the common ones are nicotine and cannabis, while ecstasy drugs are less common.
Experts speak: Dr V Monica, a medical officer at the DTC, said she sees 10 patients every day and 15-20 who come for follow-ups. She said the glamorisation of drugs on OTT platforms has resulted in an increase in drug use. IMH Director Poorna Chandrika said drug supply routes should be curbed, and the upcoming drug abuse survey will be helpful.