“An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure”- Benjamin Franklin

Given its aggressively destructive nature, it is often better if persons do not become entangled in substance abuse of any kind. Some may argue that the decision to abuse drugs or other substances is an individual’s decision, so how can one prevent someone from becoming hooked on drugs?

Narconon International says that “young people must feel that the risks of using drugs far outweigh what they see as the benefits.” Drug education must fill this void with accurate information about the risks of drug use, presented in a believable manner.

The main appeal of drug use is the perception that it will solve problems or allow the user to escape reality. The problems could be shyness or inability to fit in, stress of social, school or family situations, boredom or lack of adventure or excitement. Proper preventative drug education must offer an alternative to the escape offered by illicit drug use.

The US-based National Institute on Drug Abuse lists the principles that should be included in a successful prevention programme.