72pc of west Dublin teens getting HSE help for drug addiction take cannabis
Sean McCarthaigh – 28 August 2019
Twice as many teens said they used cannabis (72pc) as cocaine (36pc) in the HSE report
Cannabis remains the main problem drug among teenagers from west Dublin receiving treatment for addiction.
A report by the HSE Adolescent Addiction Service in Bally- fermot found cannabis was the primary substance of use by patients using the service last year, with 72pc reporting taking it.
The report said there was no record of patients using opiates, solvents or head shop-type products last year.
It also noted there was a decrease in the number of patients who reported taking alcohol, benzodiazepines and amphetamines.
The report documented that some teenagers also had issues with indebtedness and absconding.
Ninety-three per cent of those availing of the service last year were male while 11pc were non-Irish nationals, the HSE said.
It said the number of young people who had previous contact with child and adolescent mental health services was up eight percentage points on 2017 to 48pc but was lower than at any other stage over the previous 22 years.
The existence of substance abuse within the patient’s family was recorded in 52pc of cases last year.
More than half of all patients also came from families where their parents had separated.
Nine teenagers were out of education or training at the time of being referred to the service.
The HSE said it submitted four child protection notifications in relation to patients last year.
÷ CANNABIS: Taken by 72pc of users
÷COCAINE: Taken by 36pc of users
÷AMPHETAMINES: Taken by 30pc of users
÷BENZODIAZAPINES: Taken by 12pc of users
÷KETAMINE: Taken by 7pc of users