In 2011 ages 21 to 24 was the highest percentage in drunk drivers in crashes. Ingesting drugs and alcohol use alters the normal function of the brain. Teens everywhere are feeling peer pressure to drink and use drugs. As an eighth grader, I have never been approached about drugs or alcohol, but I have been taught the effects of these and that I need to have a plan so that I am not persuaded to take drugs or alcohol.
My friends and students that I am associated with do not do drugs or drink alcohol, so I have very little experience with drunk and drugged driving. Last year at Maize Middle School, seventh graders were required to take health class. One of the topics was the effects of underage drinking and drugs. I do not know anybody who uses drugs or drinks alcohol that is under the drinking age. In my lifetime I have never felt pressured to take drugs or alcohol, despite this, I cannot guarantee that as I advance into highschool next year.
Effects from using drugs and alcohol vary. Vision is altered, so that there can be blurring, glare, and hallucinations. “Snow lights” are another effect of certain drugs. “Snow lights” are lights flashing or moving in your peripheral field of vision. These “Snow lights” can cause drivers to swerve. People tend to be aggressive or hostile when drugs or alcohol is in their body. Although drugs can increase alertness, driving skills are not improved. The burst of energy can suddenly wear off. Effects also include smelling or hearing things that aren’t there, or difficulty with concentration. Every two minutes someone is injured due to drunk driving. Each day twenty-eight people die from drunk driving crashes. Alcohol and drugs are addictive and it can become difficult to quit. Effects vary on drugs and dosage, but the risks are not worth the effects and potential consequences.
Even though I have never been pressured to take drugs or alcohol, I may when I attend high school. It is always good to have a plan that insures the you will not become a victim of peer pressure. You need to have solid facts. Facts show that you know what you are dealing with and cannot be mislead or deceived. Along with facts, you need to keep a general idea of what to say, so that you do not get caught off guard. Last, have positive influences around you. Friends and family that support you help you make smart and clear choices. Friendship is hard earned and your friends should be good, faithful, caring people. It is important to have a plan to make sure that you don’t become a sitting duck, waiting to become a victim.
Every two in three people will experience a drunk driving car crash, so it is likely for you or me become a fatality or to become injured, and it doesn’t matter what your age is. Knowledge is the best weapon to escape peer pressure and make smart drug free decisions. Your peers should not push you around and make you do what they want, it is your life and your choice. Do not let yourself become a victim, and do not let drunk and drugged driving spread effect you.
Red Ribbon Week 1st Place Winner Essay
In 2012, 10,076 people were killed in a motor vehicle accident. 200 of those involved alcohol or other drugs. Two of these were Kylie Jobe and Kyle Thornburg, Maize High School graduates. They were killed by a driver whose blood alcohol content was .23, almost three times the legal limit. Knowing that people so close to my community were victims to drunk driving, has made me think twice about drinking before I can legally do it. Drinking and doing drugs not only impairs judgement, concentration, and reaction time, but it can also lead to depression or even death.
In the brain, there are tiny cells called neurons. Neurons translate information into electrical signals that the brain can understand. Alcohol and drugs slow the pace of the Neurons, causing impaired judgement, concentration, and reaction time. It may seem funny when someone is stumbling around because they have had too much to drink, but if that person were to get behind the wheel, the effects could be fatal. Driving requires full attention, which is hard to give while high or intoxicated. A person would not be able to stop, or start, in time, which is the cause of most motor vehicle accidents. Kylie and Kyle were killed at an intersection when it was their turn to go. The drunk driver could not stop in time and crashed into them. The fear of me being that drunk driver is enough to convince anyone to not drink or do drugs, for it is possible to die from drugs and alcohol even when not behind the wheel.
Drugs like Marijuana can affect areas of the brain that control body movements, balance and coordination. This drug, paired with alcohol, can be lethal. Drugs and alcohol can also have permanent effects on the brain, such as sleep disturbances, mood changes, anxiety and depression. These occur when the liver breaks down and toxic substances in it travel to the brain, damaging the brain cells. Alcohol and drugs can also have a negative effect on the heart. Binge drinking and long term drinking can cause the heart to beat too rapidly, or irregularly, forcing doctors to install a pacemaker. Heavy drinking and drug use can also cause strokes and high blood pressure. Strokes are caused by blood clots to the brain, meaning that the brain is not getting enough blood. People who binge drink, long term drink, or do drugs are 39 percent more likely to have a stroke or high blood pressure than people who do not. The negative impact that drugs and alcohol can have on my life is another huge reason that I will not be doing them anytime soon.
Hearing a lot of stories about how people have died due to drugs and alcohol have convinced me to not try them, for my health and for others around me. Kylie and Kyle would still be alive had that driver not been intoxicated. So many more people would still be here today, those who did the drugs and those who did not, if people had just chosen to say no to drugs and alcohol.
Kansas DUI Impact Center
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