A National Directory of Drug Treatment Centers and Alcohol Treatment Centers, Therapists and Specialists. A free, simple directory providing assistance and guidance for those seeking help regarding alcohol addiction, drug addiction, dependency and many other conditions that affect the mind, body and soul.
Call 800-580-9104 to speak with an alcohol or drug abuse counselor.

Substance Abuse Among Youth

The young people of the 21st century encounter life situations, pressures and temptations unlike any other generation before them. These experiences coupled with the volatile hormonal changes taking place in teens make for a population highly susceptible to substance abuse issues.

Youth substance abuse rates remain a cause for concern among parents, teachers and communities alike. While most anyone can fall victim to substance abuse, certain risk factors make young people particularly susceptible. At a certain point, signs and

symptoms make it necessary for parents to get help for a teen’s drug addiction problem. Without needed help, the likelihood a teen will grow up to be a drug addicted adult increases considerably.

Youth Drug Abuse Rates

drug use

The American youth have been known to use drugs more and more.

While teens have access to a host of different drugs, both legal and illegal, marijuana usage rates continue to rise from year to year. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, rates of marijuana use among teens have continued to increase since the year 2000. As of 2007, rates of marijuana use increased among 10th and 12th graders by 14.2 and 18.2 percent respectively. Reported daily usage rates have also increased from 5.1 to 6.5 percent between the years 2007 and 2012.

While a drug abuse problem is itself cause for concern, the especially damaging effects of drugs on a teen’s development process can have long-reaching consequences in his or her life. Most all types of addictive drugs interact with vital brain chemical processes. Over time, drug effects can actually alter brain structures and functions in permanent ways, especially in young people.

Since a certain degree of brain development takes place during teenage years, drug effects can cause long-term, if not permanent alterations to develop, many of which stay with a teen on into adulthood. In other words, the sooner a teen gets help for a drug abuse problem the better.

Risk Factors

While there’s no one cause of teen drug abuse problems, drug habits do develop over time with certain risk factors making teens more susceptible to substance abuse. According to the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, certain characteristics and/or lifestyles may place some teens at an increased risk, some of which include:

  • A tendency towards thrill-seeking activities
  • Psychological problems
  • Emotional instability
  • Peer pressure
  • Impulsiveness

The home environment also has a considerable influence on a teen’s sense of self and the world around them. Homes lacking needed supervision, discipline and communication deprive teens of the types of support and guidance needed to manage everyday life issues. Without these provisions in place, poor coping behaviors, such as substance abuse can easily develop in a teen’s life.

When to Get Help

Considering the potential damage substance abuse can cause in a teen’s life, parents who suspect substance abuse problems in their teens should take action at once.

Problem signs to look out for include:

  • Personality changes
  • Isolative behaviors
  • Depression
  • Fatigue or lethargy
  • Problems remembering things
  • Unusual aggressive behaviors
  • Lack of interest in activities once enjoyed
  • Changing friends or social groups
  • Sleep problems
  • Poor school performance
  • Behavior problems at school

While teens do go through passing phases, substance abuse behaviors should be taken seriously before said behaviors turn into addiction problems.

More Treatment & Detox Articles

Treatment of Eating disorder for teens

Eating disorder is particularly seen in the teenagers and mostly in girls as compared to the boys. A person with an eating disorder “typically starves himself” to lose weight. Though the exact cause of this disorder is not clear, this disorder is said to be a combination of various factors like genetics, physiological and social…..

Continue reading

Alcohol Addiction Treatment Centers for the Elderly

Elderly treatment is fragile and must be carefully considered before moving forward with care. Seniors often develop drinking problems to cope with loneliness, grief or pain. It is important to choose alcohol addiction treatment centers that have experience in treating the elderly. Substance abuse among the elderly is one of the fastest growing health problems….

Continue reading

Medical-marijuana use can block chance at transplant

Timothy Garon’s face and arms are hauntingly skeletal, but the fluid building up in his abdomen makes the 56-year-old musician look eight months pregnant. His liver, ravaged by hepatitis C, is failing. Without a new one, his doctors tell him, he will be dead in days. But Garon has been refused a spot on the….

Continue reading

Binge drinking affects later cognitive performance

Drinking College students who describe themselves as regular binge drinkers performed considerably worse on a test measuring attention and memory skills compared with students who didn’t binge. The test, by the way, was conducted while all the students were sober. The results suggest that binge drinking may affect the brain in ways that are normally….

Continue reading

What to Look for in Residential Treatment Centers

Choosing to get help for your addiction is a difficult decision as it is and to make things even more difficult you are faced with having to decide which type of treatment will be best for you. For most addicts, residential treatment centers provide the most significant care and the best chance for a full….

Continue reading