4Mild stress may cause changes in our brains and bodies that are useful, but if stress is constant or prolonged, the changes that it produces can be harmful.Some people think they can deal with stress by taking drugs. They think if they are unhappy, drugs will make them feel better, And some people say they think that taking drugs might help them to cope with stress in their lives. But drugs don't fix the problems that are causing the stress in the first place, and they don't stop the feelings themselves. Drug use can actually worsen the situation and lead to even more stress, anxiety, or even depression.What is Stress?When you are stressed your body reacts to enhance your senses and ability to meet a challenge like taking a test, building the courage to ask someone out on a date, scoring a goal, or swerving to avoid a car crash. Your body releases hormones called adrenaline and cortisol into the bloodstream, which increases your heart rate, elevates your blood pressure, boosts energy supplies by increasing glucose (blood sugar) in the bloodstream, and increases the availability of substances that repair tissues.1 All of these things happen to prepare you to handle anything that comes your way, whether it’s running away from a rabid dog or staying up late to finish a paper.
5REALITY CHECKBy using their own support systems (such as friends or going to the gym), some people are able to cope effectively with the emotional and physical demands brought on by stressful and traumatic experiences. However, individuals who experienceStressful events can profoundly influence the abuse of alcohol or other drugs. Stress is a major contributor to the initiation and continuation of alcohol or other drug use, as well as to substance abuse relapse after periods of abstinence.Children exposed to severe stress may be more vulnerable to drug use.Fifty-four percent of Americans are concerned about the level of stress in their everyday lives and two thirds of Americans say they are likely to seek help for stress.
6It is important to remember that everyone feels stressed sometimes and everyone goes through hard times. It might not seem like it now, but most things get better with time, especially if you confront the problems and work through them. Dealing with your problems directly might be difficult at first, but it will make you happier in the long run
7HOW DO YOU DEAL? Yoga Meditation Exercise Reading Bath Play a sport DrawSing
8ABOVE THE IMAGE Accept Yourself, No One's Perfect These days you can hardly turn a few pages in a magazine or sit through a movie without getting flooded with images of the “perfect” guy or girl. It’s a bit unrealistic to think that life is truly like that. Sometimes girls wrongly believe that being super skinny will make them more appealing. For guys, it may be about looking bigger or stronger. Look around – there are all kinds of people in the world. And nearly everyone has something about themselves they don’t really like. So Body image is your own idea of what your body looks like. And how you feel about yourself has a lot to do with how you see yourself and your body. So Love what you’ve got!
9If you want to make changes to your weight or strength, then by all means go for it – but do it safely and keep your overall health in mind. Taking steroids, diet pills, or abusing diuretics or laxatives are all very risky and after extended use, can really hurt your body and cause some long-term damage or even DEATH!
10Eating disorders (like Anorexia involves extreme weight loss Eating disorders (like Anorexia involves extreme weight loss. The individual believes she is overweight, even as she becomes much too thin to be healthy. In some cases, anorexia nervosa can lead to death. Anorexia or Bulimia: This disorder involves periods of overeating followed by purging (throwing up), using laxatives or excessive exercising. This behavior is often called "bingeing and purging."Bulimia), drug use and cutting are also extremely dangerous to your body and your mind.
11Not to sound like one of those outdated health class videos but… Find some comfort in knowing that everyone feels a bit weird about their bodies during high school. Sometimes you probably think, “If I could just change my (fill in the blank), my life would be so much better.” Well, it’s not that easy. Real happiness doesn’t come from the size of your jeans. It comes from personal strength, self-respect and knowing yourself.
12REALITY CHECKSteroids can cause pimples, hair loss and shrunken testicles. Seriously, they can make guys grow breasts and girls grow beards, not to mention they can cause damage to your liver and heart.Eating disorders, left untreated, can lead to malnutrition, dental problems and skin, hair and nail damage.In the United States, where a bone-thin body type is idealized by the media, the average American woman is actually 5 feet 4 inches tall and weighs 142 pounds.Anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating disorder are diseases that affect the mind and body simultaneously.Left untreated, eating disorders can also lead to muscle damage, ulcers, diabetes, kidney or liver failure, arthritis, infertility, seizures, heart attack or even death.
13ABOVE THE HYPE Know Who's Sending You the Message We get hit with media messages all the time. We hear music, we see ads, we watch TV, we see clothing logos, we read and we surf the Web. Have you ever stopped to think about how many media messages you see each day? Or who's actually sending you these messages and why?
14Ask yourself...Where is the message coming from?What is the song, Web site (or any message) telling me?What is the point of view of the person sending the message?How is the person sending the message trying to make me feel? What do they want me to do?Evaluating these messages will help you understand the influences in your life. You can make up your own mind. Don’t believe the hype.
16REALITY CHECKTeens spend more time watching TV than they do in school, and by the time they reach the age of 70, Americans will have spent 7 years of their lives watching TV (Comstock & Strasburger, 1990)The average American child may view as many as 40,000 TV ads every year. Do the math... that's estimated to be hundreds of thousands of ads by the time you're in high school.Teens spend between 4 and 5 hours a day listening to music and watching music videos.
17ABOVE THE INFLUENCE Pressure to Use Drugs There’s a lot of “information” floating around the Web about drugs and even some misinformation spreading by word-of-mouth. The movies, music and other media don’t always accurately portray the risks of use either. With all the hype around drugs, you may not realize that most high school students choose not to smoke weed.
18There is a complicated list of reasons why people try or use drugs There is a complicated list of reasons why people try or use drugs. Some people do it to change the way they feel, but by taking drugs, they haven't changed the situation. They've only distorted it for a little while. And since many drugs are depressants, the “escape” of drug use isn’t happy and can be quite unpleasant. Former users often say that drugs ended up isolating them from friends and family and made them feel more alone.
19Remember no one “plans” to become a drug addict, and every one of the millions of people with drug dependency started out thinking they had it “under control.”
20REALITY CHECKMarijuana is addictive. More teens are in treatment with a primary diagnosis of marijuana dependence than for all other illicit drugs combined.Meth can damage blood vessels in the brain, leading to strokes (which can produce irreversible damage).Some side effects of steroid use include liver tumors and cancer, jaundice, fluid retention, high blood pressure, kidney tumors, and trembling.Inhalants can kill you the very first time you use themMotor vehicle crashes remain the number one cause of death among youth ages 16 to 20.
21ABOVE THE CONTROL Why Would You Pick on Others? There are many ways that young people tease (or bully) each other, even if they don't realize it at the time. This can be Bullying can be direct attacks like punching, shoving, hitting or maliciously teasing, name-calling, sending threatening IMs or taunting someone online, and stealing or damaging belongings. It can also include spreading rumors or encouraging others to exclude someone. You may even feel guilty if you’re pressured by your friends to join in on the taunting when you know it’s not right.
22IT’S NOT COOL TO HURT OTHERS If someone is encouraging you to pick on someone else, stand your ground and don’t take part. In most cases you’ll find that when a bully doesn't have an audience, he (or she) may be less likely to keep it up. If you feel up to it, you can even speak up and defend the person being picked on.IT’S NOT COOLTO HURT OTHERS
23REALITY CHECKResorting to violence or carrying a weapon to stop being picked on will not solve the problem. In fact, it's likely to make it worse.Seventy-five percent of students report they have been bullied.60 percent of boys who were bullies in middle school had at least one criminal conviction by the age of 24 (Olweus, 1993).
24THINGS TO REMEMBER… Learn to recognize stress Learn to take time to de-stressDon’t become a victim of peer pressureLearn to Love and respect yourselfDon’t bully othersTreat others as you would want them to treat you!