October 8, 2014

Kids with strong minds less likely to abuse substances

A new study by the University of Oregon has found with pre-teens with strong executive attention are less likely to abuse drugs and alcohol.

Executive attention is working memory that helps people focus and complete goal-oriented tasks.

The study, which looked at youth ages 11 to 13, found that children who fared badly on working-memory test were more likely to develop substance abuse issues. On the other hand, teens that performed well were less likely to have early drug experimentation turn into problematic usage.

“Not all forms of early drug use are problematic,” Atika Khurana, author of the study. “There could be some individuals who start early, experiment and then stop. And there are some who could start early and go on into a progressive trajectory of continued drug use. We wanted to know what separates the two?”


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