Adolescent Substance Abuse
Is Your Teen Experimenting With Drugs and Alcohol?
The teenage years are a time of self-discovery and can be a time of peer pressure and temptation as well. Trying to find a clique to fit in with can be stressful which can explain why youth begin to experiment with drugs and alcohol within their social circles. Even simply trying drugs and alcohol for the first time can lead you down a very dangerous road and can result in substance abuse quickly. If you suspect that your teen is trying drugs or alcohol, you may want to sit down and have a conversion with them about the number of risks involved.
Most Commonly Abused Substances Among Teens
Some substances are more commonly abused by adolescents than others. Some of the most frequently abused substances by youth are:
Commonly referred to as ‘weed’, marijuana is widely used by youth and teens alike. A common misconception is that marijuana does not contain addictive qualities and, thus, teens find no real harm in using it. The truth is that marijuana is considered a gateway drug and can lead you down a dangerous path of substance abuse.
Since alcohol is so readily available, many teens can get their hands on it relatively easily. Alcohol is a dangerous substance to be abusing for the developing brain of a teen and should not be consumed until it is legally permitted to be. In most states, the drinking age is 21 years old, but far too many adolescents are consuming alcohol at a much younger age. It’s important that if you notice that your teen is consuming alcohol, that you speak to them about this matter as it is a toxic habit to get into.
Opioids are being increasingly abused by adolescents across the U.S. Pharmaceutical prescription drug abuse is on the rise as teens can often locate them in bathroom cabinets of their very own home. Some of the most common opioids abused by adolescents are OxyContin and Vicodin. Getting hooked on opioids is one of the more serious addictions and should be spoken to about with your teen immediately.
This category of drug is most commonly abused by teens in an effort to experience an ‘out of body’ experience. These drugs can be very addictive and can cause panic attacks and phobia. Some of the most common hallucinogen drugs are mushrooms, salvia, and LSD.
Treatment for Substance Abuse
If your teen is experimenting with drugs or alcohol, it’s time to discuss treatment options with them. Early detection of drug and alcohol abuse can help prevent future drug abuse issues later on in life. Speaking with a counselor or therapist can allow your teen to discuss openly about why they decided to try drugs or alcohol and what motivated them to do so.
The two main types of treatment programs are inpatient and outpatient treatment. Depending on the severity of the substance abuse that your teen is going through, there will be a more appropriate program for them.
It’s important that substance abuse is addressed as there can be detrimental physical and mental ramifications if they are not managed and dealt with early on. Support groups can help motivate teens to carry on in a life that is substance-free as a life of substance abuse or addiction is no life at all.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.