NIDA Director Kicks Off NDAFW and Chat Day

Dr. Nora Volkow Chat Day Video Screenshot. ONE MORE WEEK! Remembering past years as we countdown to Drugs & Alcohol Chat Day. Here is NIDA Director, Dr. Nora Volkow in a #NDAFW #throwback.

Photo by NIDA.

By Dr. Nora Volkow, NIDA Director

I’m excited that National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week® (NDAFW) has kicked off for 2019! For almost 10 years, NDAFW has helped teens get the facts about drugs, drug use, and the science behind addiction. NIDA provides resources for use during NDAFW events and activities, as well as throughout the year. The response from communities, teens’ influencers, schools, and teens themselves has been terrific.

One of the events I look forward to the most is National Drugs & Alcohol Chat Day when I, along with 50 other scientists and science writers, get to talk directly to teens via web chat. The 2019 Chat Day will take place on Thursday, January 24.

This is one of the few years I’ll have to miss Chat Day, because I’m headed to the United Nations that day to present information on drugs and health to the international community. NIDA’s Deputy Director, Dr. Wilson Compton, will sit in for me to answer questions from teens, alongside the directors of other important federal health agencies.

I wish I could be in two places at once, but thankfully I’m still able to participate in Chat Day in other ways—and you can, too!

Anyone can watch the 2019 Chat Day live stream beginning at 8 a.m. Eastern time, even if you aren’t registered. Keep an eye out on our website on January 24 for when the public link is available.

Dr. Nora Volkow shares her
"Addiction is a disease that can be treated..." (Photo by NIDA.)

Also, @NIDAnews will live-tweet coverage of the event all day. If you’re interested in more “social” ways to join in the conversation on Chat Day, post your own video or photo with the SHATTER THE MYTHS® Pledge Card [PDF - 94KB], and be sure to use the hashtag #NDAFW.

I know most teens don’t use drugs or drink alcohol, but Chat Day can still help teens counteract the myths about drugs—myths from social media, pop culture, or friends. Linking students with scientists and other experts is just one way we can all SHATTER THE MYTHS®.

Dr. Nora Volkow chats with teens online.
Dr. Nora Volkow during Chat Day in 2015. (Photo by NIDA.)

Want more information about Chat Day? Check out previous years’ transcripts and our quick FAQs.

Find Help Near You

Use the SAMHSA Treatment Locator to find substance use or other mental health services in your area. If you are in an emergency situation, this toll-free, 24-hour hotline can help you get through this difficult time: call 1-800-273-TALK, or visit the Suicide Prevention Lifeline. We also have step by step guides on what to do to help yourself, a friend or a family member.

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