An Exploration of Addiction: Young Adults

by Pablo Bolanos on June 27, 2017

In the previous installment of our Exploration of Addiction series, we examined the adolescent years and how access, curiosity, and a number of other factors can influence adolescent drug and alcohol use. We now turn our attention to a demographic that is sometimes synonymous with excess, experimentation, and substance-abuse: young adulthood.

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, college-age drinking is perceived by many young adults as a core part of their life. Casual or recreational drinking is one aspect of the experience; however binge drinking can create problematic behavior with sometimes unforgiving consequences.

More than one-third of full-time college students aged 18-22 engaged in binge drinking in the past month, with approximately 1 in 5 using an illicit drug in the same period of time according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Research reveals exactly how damaging this new age of personal discovery can be if drugs and alcohol abuse takes hold:

  • One in 4 college students report academic consequences from drinking
  • About 97 thousand students between ages of 18 and 24 report experiencing alcohol-related sexual assault or date rape
  • An estimated 20 percent of college students meet the criteria for an alcohol use disorder
  • Approximately 1,800 college students between ages of 18 and 24 die from alcohol-related unintentional injuries, like car accidents

In addition to increased alcohol use and binge drinking during early adulthood, experimentation with drugs also increases. The National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that drug use is highest among people in their late teens and twenties. Of all age demographics, this group corresponded to 21 percent of reported drug use in the past month.

What does this mean to the future of those young-adults that partake in this troubling trend? If left unchecked, this group is at greater risk of developing a substance-abuse disorder as they enter the workforce, typically the next stage in their lives. Understandably, employers are unlikely to hire job candidates or tolerate employees who abuse drugs or alcohol. For this reason, it’s crucial for those closest to young adults to watch for signs of a budding substance-abuse disorder and intervene as soon as possible. Thankfully, many resources such as Partnership for Drug-Free Kids can help to facilitate conversations when drug and alcohol abuse is suspected.

In the end, prevention efforts centered on education and open lines of communications are essential to divert risky and dangerous behavior before it becomes life altering. To learn more about this blog series, read our introductory post.

Read more about how drug abuse affects the workplace, visit our website or contact us online.

Name that Drug: Seemingly Superhuman

by Pablo Bolanos on June 23, 2017

DATIA focus magazine is a quarterly publication of the Drug & Alcohol Testing Industry Association (DATIA) that provides up-to-date resources and information. As a top publication in our industry, DATIA focus features content on leading innovations, research, and current trends.

The publication features in-depth articles that discuss trends, the effects of drugs, legal implications of drug and alcohol testing in the workplace, and advancements in testing. Quest Diagnostics authors are featured in a popular column called “Name that Drug,” which draws in readers with interesting facts about an unidentified legal or illegal drug leading up to its reveal.

“Seemingly Superhuman” in the spring edition was written by Dr. Steven Sykes, Scientific Director and Nicole Jupe, Marketing Manager, at Quest Diagnostics and describes a substance that was sought after for its mind-altering highs but also earned a reputation for inciting violence. Give the article a read and see if you can solve the mystery.

To learn more about drug testing, visit our website or contact us online.

ESP: Simplicity from Start to Finish

June 21, 2017Drug Testing

When technology is at its best, it combines powerful functionality with intuitive design. The Employer Solutions Portal (ESP) drug testing portal is a great example of this combination. But don’t take our word for it. A longtime client recently wrote us to say, “With ESP, we can set up templates and minimize data entry. It’s […]

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I’m There: Laron Nelson

June 19, 2017Drug Testing

Always racing against time, Laron Nelson, Technical Forensic Processor, greets thousands of packages with a smile and an eagerness to get them moving throughout our Lenexa, Kansas laboratory. He is part of the specimen processing team that must always work quickly and efficiently because our clients trust Quest to deliver timely, accurate drug test results. […]

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Top 10 Drug Testing Tips for HR

June 16, 2017Drug Testing

Human Resources professionals serve as trusted advisors offering insights and guidance on a variety of topics such as staffing, benefits, compensation, and employee engagement. Ultimately, the role centers on making a positive impact for the workforce and retaining high-performing employees who drive results. As the labor market tightens, the importance of effective recruitment strategies has […]

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Mapping Drug Use in the U.S. Workforce

June 9, 2017Drug Testing

Which drugs are popular in my county? How does workplace drug use in my state compare to the rest of the country? Has drug use in the American workforce changed significantly during the past decade? Employers, media, government, and policymakers frequently look to Quest Diagnostics for insights about their specific geographies. These inquiries are especially […]

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Cocaine Continues Upward Trend

June 1, 2017Drug Testing

Cocaine is derived from the coca plant native to South America where many chew its leaves to squash pain, thirst, hunger, and fatigue. By the 1880s, doctors as famous as Sigmund Freud were studying cocaine as a “miracle drug” as an anesthetic for surgery and for a variety of health conditions including anxiety, addiction, and […]

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New Collection Site Locator – Coming Soon

May 26, 2017Collections

As the world’s leading provider of diagnostic testing, information, and services, we empower people to take action to improve health outcomes. This journey often starts with a specimen collection. Whether the visit is for a wellness screening, a glucose tolerance test, or a drug screen, locating the right collection site is a critical step in […]

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Celebrate a Life-changing Alternative

May 22, 2017Drug Testing

May is National Drug Court Month. It is a time to raise awareness of drug courts and celebrate a successful strategy for cutting crime and saving lives. It is estimated that each year, drug court programs help 150,000 participants restore their lives by providing an alternative to incarceration and a drug-dependent lifestyle. The first drug […]

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Increases in Illicit Drugs, Including Cocaine, Drive Workforce Drug Positivity to Highest Rate in 12 Years

May 16, 2017Drug Testing

The Quest Diagnostics Drug Testing Index™ (DTI) reveals insights into patterns of drug use among the American workforce. It has been published annually for more than 25 years as a public service for government, employers, policymakers, media, and the general public. This year’s report will be presented at the Drug and Alcohol Testing Industry Association […]

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