AT LEAST a fifth of teenagers heading to Schoolies this year intend to use drugs, and up to half of those plan to combine drugs with alcohol.
A National Cannabis Prevention and Information Centre survey of about 600 school leavers was released on Thursday and showed of those planning to use drugs during the end of school celebrations, 90% intended to use cannabis.
The centre's senior researcher, Dr Peter Gates, warned of the potential effects of cannabis - from anxiety and paranoia to hallucinations, panic and vomiting when combined with alcohol.
Dr Gates said combining more than one substance was "playing with fire" and side-effects could be "unpredictable and extreme".
He said it was "vitally important" for parents to talk to their children about drug use before Schoolies, adding that children should be armed with accurate knowledge about situations that could arise.
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