Dangers of Energy Drinks

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In response to the hospitalization of four local school students after the consumption of an energy drink known as “Red Line,” the Florida School Board has began a possible campaign to ban energy drinks in all Florida Schools. Although an independent school, MCDS does sometimes follow the lead of public schools, such as in determining when to close school or when certain national tests are given. If the Florida School Board goes ahead with prohibiting energy drinks will MCDS feel obligated to forbid energy drinks in its own school?

For those who are unfamiliar with the energy drink formula and have never consumed one of these power boosting beverages, the possibility is of little concern. But for those who are dependent on these beverages, the ban may cause much mayhem. A student who wishes to remain anonymous stated that “If MCDS banned energy drinks it would be ridiculous. Before games, I drink an energy drink to get me going. When students pull an all-nighter for school projects or studying for tests, most students drink these drinks to stay awake.” Junior Jack Long avowed “I think that Middle School should not be allowed to have these Energy Drinks, They already have an infinite amount of energy in them. Students in High School, like me, need our Monster sometimes, in order to get after school assignments completed. If teachers assigned less work, I wouldn’t need them as much. Also these kids were drinking Redline, which is like a hundred times more powerful than the stuff they sell at 7-11.”

When asked their opinion on the matter many students categorized this possible veto as just another way school administrations overreact to one occurrence and limit students’ freedoms. Other examples and are the banning of iPods and the designation of backpack zones. Senior Andrew Tripodo mocks the possibility when he says, “I recently sustained a cut from my belt while reaching into my pocket. Can the administration look into banning belts?” Other students simply responded that “since we are not allowed to drink anything anyway except for at break or lunch it won’t really change the flow of anything.”

Faculty members reported that they think that “the ban of energy drinks would be a lovely idea, in order to keep students calm.” In the professional medical opinion of Fran Oppedisano, RN: “This case is not the first time a student has had to go to the Emergency Room in response to an Energy Drink use. When I worked in the ER, there were a great number of these cases. The main health issue with Energy Drinks is that they can cause severe Tachycardia, or a drastic increase in heart rate. I am also appalled to see how the beverage companies market their products towards adolescents, when injuries can easily erupt from over consumption of the very merchandise they are selling.” Will this tension between students’ rights and the adult community’s desire to keep kids safe become an issue at MCDS? Only time will tell.





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