*** NEWS RELEASE ***
For Immediate Release
October 6, 2014
Lighthouse Network’s Dr. Karl Benzio Says Teens Looking for New Ways to Get High is a Warning Sign for Coming Dangers
Philadelphia—Trends among kids and teens move so fast that it can be hard for parents to keep up. Those jeans are so last week. That song? No longer cool. And no one uses that phrase anymore.
But the ever-emerging types of synthetics drugs are something parents definitely need to keep up with, says Karl Benzio, M.D., a psychiatrist and founder and executive director of Lighthouse Network (www.lighthousenetwork.org), an addiction and mental health counseling helpline.
A new synthetic drug called Cloud 9—a powerful liquid that is dropped on the tongue or even mixed with gum or soda—has sent multiple teens to the hospital in Michigan. And a new method of ingesting marijuana called “dabbing” involves inhaling a highly potent pot vapor after users burn hash oil or THC oil with blow torches to create a wax. The wax is then heated again so the vapor can be inhaled.
“The fact that kids and teens are discovering new ways to take these powerful, dangerous drugs is scary,” Benzio said. “They sometimes think that because they make it at home or get it from a friend rather than on the street, this makes it safer. But the vapor that comes from this marijuana wax, for example, is five times stronger than smoking pot in a joint or through a pipe—it’s like free-basing. And the fact that getting Cloud 9 is so easy and that students are using it at school is evidence that this drug is powerful and making rounds among kids.”
In “dabbing,” the hash or THC oils can also be used to fill e-cigarettes or “vape pens.” One mother who was interviewed by a CBS station in Chicago said she nearly fainted after trying her adult daughter’s vape pen that contained just four or five drops of the liquid. She said her daughter bought a bottle of the oil for $30 from the backroom of a tobacco store.
Cloud 9 is also a powerful liquid that can be taken through a vaporizer or e-cigarette. Also called “bath salts,” Cloud 9 has effects similar to cocaine or meth. Hallucinations, nausea, vomiting and an extremely high heart rate are all symptoms.
“When teens try these types of drugs and experiment with new ways of getting high,” Benzio said, “it’s a telling sign that there is a very real danger of their trying much stronger, much more dangerous drugs and becoming addicted to them. Once someone is addicted to a feeling of being high, they will fuel the need to recreate that experience again and again, eventually turning to deadlier and more addictive substances.”
Topics such as addiction are taking center stage this week as October 10 is World Mental Health Day, with the overall objective of raising awareness of mental health issues around the world and mobilizing efforts in support of mental health in an effort to make mental health care a reality for people worldwide. Parents concerned about their teenage children who are looking for new ways to get high or who are exhibiting symptoms of mental health issues can call the free, 24-hour Lighthouse Network Helpline at 1-844-LIFE-CHANGE (1-844-543-3242).
The most effective help will incorporate God into the healing process, because without Him, no amount of rehab, treatment or medication can bring lasting healing and transformation. Lighthouse Network also provides online resources for those concerned about a family member, friend or a loved one. Visit www.lighthousenetwork.org/im-family-a-friend.
Lighthouse Network representatives and counselors also help those in need navigate the complex health care system and complicated insurance processes, offering expertise to clients to maximize their insurance in order to obtain the best treatment option with minimal out-of-pocket cost. Lighthouse can also help those without insurance find treatment options.
Benzio shares insights on various mental health issues in the one-minute daily radio feature “Life Change with Dr. Karl,” airing on approximately 425 radio stations across the country, including 200 stations in the American Family Radio Network. The purpose of the “Life Change” program is to bring scientific expertise and biblical principles together to examine some common daily struggles and help people successfully navigate life’s obstacles and enjoy fulfilled lives. For more information on “Life Change with Dr. Karl,” visit www.lighthousenetwork.org/life-change-with-dr-karl/.
Lighthouse Network works to guide struggling people through storms to achieve peace and find answers for those who have a hard time defining their problems. Lighthouse Network also offers the free, 24-hour Lighthouse Life Change Helpline toll-free at 1-844-LIFE-CHANGE (1-844-543-3242).
Lighthouse Network’s web site, www.lighthousenetwork.org, provides information to those struggling to find help for their addiction problems, as well as to family members searching for help for a loved one. Topics addressed include alcohol abuse, addictions, and other mental health or life management issues.
Lighthouse Network offers several resources for those struggling with addiction and their families, such as Stepping Stones, a free daily devotional for managing life’s stressors and storms and equipping readers with healthy decision-making skills. Visit www.lighthousenetwork.org/stepping-stones/ to read the devotionals and sign up to receive them daily via email.
For more information on Lighthouse Network, visit www.lighthousenetwork.org or call the Lighthouse Life Change Helpline toll-free at 1-844-LIFE-CHANGE (1-844-543-3242).
To schedule interviews with Dr. Karl Benzio at Lighthouse Network, contact Deborah Hamilton at email@example.com, 215-815-7716 or 610-584-1096.
Lighthouse Network is a Christian-based, non-profit organization that offers an addiction and mental health counseling helpline providing treatment options and resources to equip people and organizations with the skills necessary to shine God’s glory to the world, stand strong on a solid foundation in the storms of their own lives, and provide guidance and safety to others experiencing stormy times, thus impacting their lives, their families and the world.
Karl Benzio, M.D. is the founder and executive director of Lighthouse Network. With a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering, Benzio went on to medical school and then specialized in psychiatry. His experiences include teaching pastors, ministry leaders and students counseling and conflict resolution skills in Uganda and Kenya; leading a behavioral health team into post-Hussein Iraq to equip health care specialists with treatment and assessment skills and successfully testifying for the Pennsylvania House of Representatives opposing legislation for Plan B contraception administration and for President George Bush’s Council on Bioethics regarding Right of Conscience. He is currently a member of Focus on the Family’s Physicians Resource Council. His specialties include Adolescents, Addictions, Decision-Making, Infusing Spirituality into Practical Treatment Modalities and the Ramifications of Decision-Making on Social Policy.