An English dentist recently admitted to defrauding the National Health Services (NHS) in order to get more of his drug of choice. Behnam Aghabeigi has been working in the Birmingham community as a dentist for years and was highly respected as a former oral surgeon and training director at Birmingham Dental Hospital; his admission of fraud came as quite a surprise. A clinical fellow with Harvard School of Dental Medicine and a father of three, few expected anyone like him to succumb to drug addiction or to perpetrate that drug addiction with fraud.
The story just goes to show that there is no such thing as a stereotypical drug addict. Even if your teen is on the honor role or a top athlete, drug abuse and addiction are still a risk.
Unfortunately, despite Aghabeigi’s past successes and high standing in the community, he will have to suffer the consequences of his actions just like anyone else. He is facing prosecution by the NHS fraud team and will be the subject of a conduct hearing by the General Dental Council (GDC). He pleaded guilty to 12 charges of fraud at Birmingham’s magistrates’ court.
Aghabeigi’s drug of choice? Buprenorphine. The dentist said that he got prescriptions for the medication under the names of friends and family members. In the United States, the drug is approved in the treatment of heroin addiction and, in its pure form, is the first step in a long-term medicated heroin detox.
Aghabeigi’s lawyer, William Edis, said that the dentist had health problems, drug addiction among them: “He is a high quality dentist brought low by his illness. This is a tragic story.”
The same can be said of teenagers who otherwise are excelling in their lives but fall victim to a drug addiction. Prescription drug addiction, too, is often cited by high-achieving high school students. Many use different types of pills to inform their performance at school or in sports. Adderall addiction, for example, is exceedingly common among teens who feel they need a stimulant to help them stay awake and complete multiple school projects, volunteer shifts and team practices. Many teen athletes report taking steroid medications to increase their strength and performance. Still others use opiate prescription drugs and sedatives to relax or “come down” after stimulant abuse or high levels of stress over standardized testing, exams and college applications.
If you believe that your high-functioning teen is abusing prescription medications or other drugs, including alcohol, contact us at Newport Academy today. We can help you determine the best course of action and treatment for your teen.