MCAP newsletter

As the blossoms of spring give way to sprawling summer leaves, we too are beginning to soak up the sun, breath in the fresh air, and harness a renewed energy as we work to support Medfield youth! In keeping with the bustle of the spring season, March, April, and May were busy MCAP months! On March 16th during the Medfield High School Spring Athletics Night, MCAP member Sue Andersen-Navalta gave a short presentation on the impact of substance use on the teen brain and body. Parent attendees were presented with the opportunity to sign up to view the Hidden in Plain Sight exhibit in a “parent coffee” style format, with both morning and evening presenta-tions available. MCAP also had a resource table at MHS’ “The Other Talk” event, educating parents about protecting their teens against substance misuse as they prepare to enter college and at Dr. Ruth Potee’s talk about the impact of substance use on the developing teen brain. As you may know, Massachusetts communities are facing a growing opioid epidemic. In this issue, our education series focuses on providing you with relevant information so that you can be informed about opioids and addiction prevention. Wishing you health and happiness! Warmly, MCAP Coalition Members MCAP Newsletter: Welcome Medfield Cares About Prevention (MCAP) Stay in touch! Website: Email: Medfield Cares About Prevention (MCAP) Working together to promote mental health and prevent alcohol, marijuana, and other drug use amongst our youth Spring 2017 Volume 2, Issue 1 “…Bringing people together to ensure community programs work!” Inside This Issue: Opioids 2 Hidden in Plain Sight: Parent Coffees 4 MYTT Summit 5 Recent Events 6 Teen Corner 6 Next Issue 6 Member Spotlight: Sue Andersen-Navalta 7 Page 2 Medfield Cares About Prevention Opioids By Annette Anderson, Pharmacist CVS — MCAP Team Member* Talk to your kids! They are listening! The opioid drug epidemic has been highly reported in the news and is impacting our communities and families. Prescription opioids are commonly known by the names oxycodone, hydrocodone, morphine, hydromorphone, and fentanyl and are sometimes prescribed to mitigate pain after a surgery for an injury, wisdom teeth removal, or other medical procedure. Opioids are essentially synthetic forms of the street drug heroin and interact with receptors in the central nervous system to bring about a blockage of pain sensations from the body. Opioids also cause feelings of a “high”, a feeling of intense pleasure brought about by a release of certain neurotransmitters in the central nervous system. After a period of only 72 hours/3 days, the body develops a dependence upon opioids. The body changes in such a way that it regards the opioids as necessary for its wellbeing, much as it regards glucose and oxygen as vital for survival. After 3 days of exposure to an opioid, sudden removal of this medication will cause symptoms of nausea, irritability, insomnia and emotional outbursts. Dependence begins to develop for every person after 3 days of exposure because our biology is all the same. Addiction develops when the pleasure experienced from opioid use outweighs the risk of the negative symptoms of withdrawal and the opioid is taken beyond the initial legitimate medical need (It is estimated that 85% of people who become addicted were first exposed to opioids for a legitimate medical need.) Additionally, the body learns how to more efficiently metabolize the opioid with continued exposure. Over time, this increased efficiency in metabolism causes the patient to require higher doses of that opioid to create the same pleasurable feeling, the “high”. If the patient runs out of his or her prescribed opioid medication, there is a risk that the person will turn to heroin to avoid withdrawal symptoms and to achieve the same pleasurable effects of the opioids. Heroin is widely available, low in cost, and bypasses the opioid prescriber who may question the continued use. *Annette is a pharmacist who works at the Medfield CVS. She routinely educates parents, youth and senior citizens about the safe use of prescription medication and is providing vital information to consider as a patient Volume 2, Issue 1 Page 3 While opioid medication may be the appropriate drug for some conditions there are important guidelines to consider as a patient or caregiver and to discuss with your medical practitioner. Pain treatment guidelines:  Any continued, or chronic, source of pain needs to be diagnosed by a health care professional. A proper diagnosis will guide the medical practitioner as to what method of treatment is most appropriate for the patient.  Explore other treatment options with your medical practitioner. Some pharmaceutical pain treatment options besides opioids are non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, such as ibuprofen, naproxen and aspirin. Also, acetaminophen, prescription steroids and muscle relaxants may be used. There are also many non-pharmaceutical pain relief options such as heat or cold therapy, physical therapy, alternative medicine and surgical interventions. When the use of an opioid is warranted:  Know that the risk of dependence rises as the length of opioid therapy increases and the dosage increases.  Minimize opioid drug use to the shortest interval possible (to minimize the risk of dependence).  If it is necessary to take the opioid for longer than 3 days, the patient should be aware there will be withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms can be minimized by working with the practitioner to slowly discontinue the opioid and, possibly, receive short term pharmaceutical support to mitigate withdrawal symptoms.  Once the medical need for the pain relief provided by the opioid is done, safely removing any remaining medication from the household will prevent the temptation to continue taking the medication. This will also ensure that the opioid medication does not get into the hands of someone without a prescription.  Medications can be returned to many local police stations in the take-back drug collection bin for safe disposal.  If after slow elimination of the medication, there is still a desire to use the opioid despite there not being a medical need, the patient or caretaker should contact the medical provider immediately to be evaluated for opioid addiction. Drug Take Back at the Public Safety Building Volume 2, Issue 1 Page 4 By Dawn Alcott, LICSW — Director of Medfield Youth Outreach and MCAP Leadership Team Member MCAP desires to provide opportunities that support parents and increase their knowledge about protective and risk factors to reduce substance misuse in Medfield youth. Hidden in Plain Sight (HIPS) is an ages 21+ exhibit that seeks to build communication between parents and youth. The HIPS exhibit features information about the impact of substance misuse in teens’ lives alongside a staged room where various items may indicate teen substance misuse. Items in the room range from devices used to conceal drugs and alcohol, to subtle suggestions that indicate changes in a teen’s preference in friends, media, and apparel that may indicate substance use. Participants are encouraged to explore each item for themselves. The display is not meant to be scary. It is not meant to have the participant assume that they would find all of the items in a teen’s room, but rather open conversations that lead to deeper dialogues with teens. The exhibit has helps parents recognize the signs of possible substance use so they can act if necessary. The HIPS exhibit is supplemented with educational materials that act as a reminder that teens are going through a process of significant brain development that continues well into their 20’s. Adolescence is a time where the brain is particularly vulnerable to injury or disruption. Substanc-es used during these years can adversely affect brain development. The part of the brain responsible for higher order thinking, impulse control, and anticipating consequences is the last part of the brain to develop. Teens need their parents to set and continually communicate clear and consistent rules and expectations around substance use. Because of the overwhelming success of the HIPS exhibit on Medfield Day, Hidden in Plain Sight will be featured again in connection with various educational opportunities for parents. Hidden in Plain Sight is a “staged room” It is NOT intended to SCARE you or make you assume that you would find all of these items within one teens room. The intention IS to PROVIDE you with knowledge and support you in parenting a connected family. Hidden in Plain Sight: A “Staged Room” Hidden in Plain Sight: A Program the Community is Talking About! Page 5 Medfield Cares About Prevention MetroWest Youth Teaming Together (MYTT) Summit Four Medfield High School students leaders were selected to represent our community at the MetroWest Youth Teaming Together Summit on Monday, April 24th. This day-long event brought youth from across MetroWest to learn from innovators in prevention and develop their own plans for a regional prevention effort for youth by youth. Presenters at the summit included:  Representative Carolyn Dykema: Massachusetts House of Representatives, 8th Middlesex District  Representative Brian Murray: Massachusetts House of Representatives, 10th Worcester District  Ty Sells: Director of Training for Youth to Youth International in Columbus, Ohio  Matt Ganem: Northeast Regional Coordinator of Banyan Treatment Center, host of Banyan Recovery Radio, poet, and author of “The Shadow of an Addict”  Dover Youth 2 Youth: Comprehensive youth empowerment program in New Hampshire where students organize and participate as part of the solution to the drug and violence problem in our communities At the end of the day, students presented their ideas for prevention initiatives to all attendees, including a panel of prevention specialists from across the region. The ideas will be voted on and a grant will be written for the chosen plan to be implemented in MetroWest. It was an invigorating day and we are proud of our Medfield student leaders for their active participation and innovative solutions in addressing the issue of youth substance use. Medfield Cares About Prevention You can bring the HIPS exhibit to a group of your choosing (church or civic group) or plan a parent gathering with a small group of guests. You provide the participants and we will provide the exhibit! Please contact Dawn or Chelsea at or by calling (508) 359-7121 to convey your interest and schedule a gathering (hosted in our office) or at your organization. Volume 2, Issue 1 Page 6 MetroWest Youth Teaming Together (MYTT) Summit Monday, April 24th, 8:30am—3:30pm Crystal Room in Milford, MA The purpose of the Summit was to bring together high school students from across MetroWest to provide education around substance abuse prevention and to provide an opportunity for them to engage with one another in generating youth-driven regional solutions. Dr. Ruth Potee Tuesday, May 2nd, 7:00 pm—8:30 pm Medfield High School Gymnasium Dr. Potee’s expertise in adolescent brain development and its impact on teenage risk-taking, including alcohol and substance abuse, has been featured nationally. She blends scientific research with an understanding of the challenges of raising healthy teens. Parents and other interested members of the community attended to learn what they can do to keep their tweens and teens safer, healthier and substance-free through middle and high school years. If you missed this important presentation, you can watch a similar presentation online that she made in Northampton last year: Dr. Potee will also be returning to Medfield this fall for a day-long presentation to high school students. Are there any questions you would like answered? Do you have ideas that you want to share regarding prevention efforts in the community? We would love to hear from you! Contact us at to share your thoughts and questions! Be sure and check out our website for lots of great resources! Recent Events We are in the process of identifying the focus of our next MCAP newsletter and would love your feedback! Do you have a question you might want answered in the upcoming issue? Please feel free to submit any questions, specific area(s) of interest or feedback to us at the following: MCAP invites parents, youth and professionals to get involved with the coalition. We need parents whose children represent all grade levels and interested youth to join us. Contact us to learn more! We look forward to hearing from you! Next Issue Your feedback will help craft our coalition’s strategic plan for keeping Medfield youth safe! Teen Corner Sue Navalta is the happily married mother of two girls, 16 and 20 year of age, and has lived in Medfield for 20 years. Sue has her Ph.D. from Binghamton University in Psychology/Neuroscience. She then did her post-doctoral fellowship at McLean Hospital/Harvard Medi-cal School, where she has built her career for the last 23 years. Sue has studied the development of the brain’s reward and emotion systems during her ca-reer, with a special emphasis on the transitions between childhood, adolescence, and young adulthood. It is during these transitions that mental illness and drug abuse are likely to ap-pear for the first time, but may also be prevented. Her mission is to determine how the brain develops typically, when things go wrong (such as following child abuse or drug expo-sure), and how to either prevent or intervene when things go wrong. Sue is an executive board member of the National Prevention Science Coalition and gives talks and workshops on adolescent brain development, substance abuse, and child abuse locally, nationally, and internationally. Sue receives federal funding for her research from the National Institutes of Drug Abuse and of Mental Health, as well as a number of founda-tions including the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation and the Tourette’s Syndrome Association. She currently is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. Within the Town of Medfield, Sue has participated on the leadership team for Medfield Cares About Prevention (MCAP) and has been an MCAP member for 7 years. She also was an active participant in Girl Scouts and is currently a coach of a high school aged community team for Destination Imagination, which she has enjoyed for the past 12 years. Sue Andersen-Navalta Medfield Cares About Prevention Coalition Member Spotlight: Sue Andersen-Navalta Stay in touch! Website: Email: MCAP, 2016 MCAP is comprised of people who care about youth in Medfield. Whether they live or work here in town, their commitment is to grow a culture of safety and health for the community’s youth. MCAP’s primary focus is on the prevention of sub-stance misuse and the promotion of mental and emotional health. Members represent parents, youth, the public schools, law enforcement, mental health organizations, local businesses, parks & recreation, town government, substance abuse research, local media, healthcare, and faith communities. About MCAP20170726-MCAP Newsletter Spring 2017_Page_220170726-MCAP Newsletter Spring 2017_Page_320170726-MCAP Newsletter Spring 2017_Page_420170726-MCAP Newsletter Spring 2017_Page_520170726-MCAP Newsletter Spring 2017_Page_620170726-MCAP Newsletter Spring 2017_Page_7

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