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Warning over young cocaine addicts

A study carried out by a drugs charity suggests there has been a rise in the number of children and young adults who are seeking help for cocaine addiction.

DrugScope's annual poll of drug workers across Great Britain also shows that dealers have begun offering their customers "economy" cocaine, which is allowing younger people to experiment with the drug.

The economy version, which is priced at about £30 a gram, is more heavily adulterated with additives than more expensive versions of the drug.

The survey of 80 drug services across the UK, which is published in DrugScope's magazine Druglink, suggests there has been an increase in the number of younger people asking for help to treat a cocaine problem.

A DrugScope spokeswoman said: "One of the things that came up over and over again was that the age of cocaine use amongst clients was going down.

"We are not claiming that there has been a massive increase in cocaine use, but we are worried that there appear to be some young people abusing cocaine alongside other substances such as cannabis, Ecstasy and alcohol."

DrugScope chief executive Martin Barnes said: "We do not wish to exaggerate the extent of cocaine use but our survey does reveal some worrying trends.

"The use among young people, the drug's affordability and the combination with alcohol and other drugs is clearly a concern."


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Your comments: (Terms and conditions apply)

"Young kids are using cocaine because they are tired of getting yelled out but parents and school so they just try to get away from everything and they think using drugs will help - Name and address supplied

"I think cocaine users are getting younger because of the misinformation that is being fed to them in schools by federal and state drug education programs. Kids are going to experiment because of peer pressure. When kids find out that marijuana is not dangerous (conversely to what is being taught), they experiment with more dangerous drugs such as heroine, Ectasy, crack, cocaine and meth. Without knowing what harm they could be doing to their bodies. After time they realise they have new problems and therefore seek out our help. I know that this scenario is not the case with all youth, but as a parent I believe being truthful with your children is more important. Only qualified medical professionals should be teaching our kids about drugs in schools. The federal and state drug education programs don't use qualified medical professionals, they use police officers instead. As in any part of the curriculum, I believe only people who have been properly trained and have experience in their profession should be educators" - Name and address supplied