Fatal drug overdoses double among USA teens

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"More than one-fifth of drug overdose deaths among female adolescents aged 15-19 were suicide compared with 8.7 percent for males", it said.

The report referred to USA drug overdose death rates as "a major public health challenge" and emphasized the fact that between 1999 and 2007 the death rate for males was consistently higher than that for females.

Drug overdose death rates among the age group were highest for opioids, especially heroin. That's only 1.4 percent of the more than 52,000 people who died from overdoses, almost two-thirds of which are from opioids.

The recent increases in teen overdose deaths come after a relatively stable period from 2007 to 2011 and then a slight decline from 2012 to 2014.

The report analyzed the types of drugs involved in teen overdose deaths, finding that opioids had the highest death rate, followed by benzodiazepines (which are also known as "tranquilizers" and include drugs such as Valium and Xanax). It declined after 2007 but spiked again in 2015, when the CDC counted 772 overdose deaths for children aged 15-19, a rate of 3.7 deaths per 100,000 teens.

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Cocaine increased between 1999 (0.3 per 100,000) and 2006 (0.7 per 100,000), declined to 0.2 per 100,000 in 2009, and stabilized before increasing between 2013 (0.1 per 100,000) and 2015 (0.3 per 100,000). The rate of overdoses from synthetic opioids has gone up sixfold since 2002, and fatalities from heroin have tripled. However, in 2015, the boys' rate rose to 4.6 from four in the previous year. Dr. Christopher Ruhm, a researcher at the University of Virginia who recently published a study showing that the opioid death toll may be higher than reported, believes that the number of teen deaths in 2016 and 2017 will also increase, NBC News reported. The annual survey is funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

Dayton is now one of four cities where the Drug Enforcement Agency is introducing a new 360 program to tackle the problem from all angles. While the majority of overdoses were accidental, girls were more than twice as likely to have intentionally killed themselves.

"Address the crisis aggressively through prevention and treatment", Ciccarone said.

"The best way to prevent drug addiction and overdose is to prevent people from abusing drugs in the first place, talking to youth and telling them - no good, really bad for you in every way", Trump said.