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Registered: 07/26/04
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More teen girls using crystal meth
    #3935241 - 03/18/05 12:54 PM (13 years, 11 months ago)

More teen girls using crystal meth
March 18, 2005

WINNIPEG - Crystal methamphetamine is quickly becoming a popular drug of choice among teens - especially young girls, according to an expert in addictions. Zenon Lisakowski, a prevention education consultant with the Addictions Foundation of Manitoba, addressed a packed room of school trustees at their annual convention at the Delta Hotel in Winnipeg on Thursday.

He says a disturbing trend in the use of crystal meth is appearing; use of the drug is increasing in western Canada and the United States. Lisakowski believes it's only a matter of time before the drug's use peaks in Manitoba, especially among girls between 12 and 18 years old. Lisakowski says many young girls in addictions treatment say they use the drug for weight reduction. "You're not hungry. You're not tired. You feel great. You don't feel like eating," he says of the drug's effects. "When you use that, you feel that way, and guess what? You're so busy running around doing whatever that you actually lose weight.

That would be and is a very high commodity for a young female who is body conscious." Methamphetamine also causes irritability, insomnia, confusion, hallucinations, anxiety, paranoia and increased aggression. It can also cause heart problems, brain damage, hypothermia, convulsions and death.

Lisakowski says crystal meth is highly addictive. The crash from coming off the drug is hard, he says, and the resulting depression can last for months. Lisakowski says educators here can learn strategies and prevention techniques from other provinces, such as B.C. and

Alberta, where use of crystal meth has already peaked. Gary Draper, president of the Manitoba Association of School Trustees, says each school division manages its own drug and alcohol policy. He expects many school divisions will take up Lisakowski's offer to hold workshops to help train their staff to deal with students' use of crystal meth.

* Related story: crystal meth

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