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Preventing Substance Abuse

Published on February 23rd, 2016

When you are not an addict, it can be easy to judge and think that someone should just stop the harmful behaviors they are participating in. However, once one is in that mindset and develops a dependency to substances such as alcohol or addicting drugs, it is extremely difficult to dig out of that hole. There are treatment programs available, but it is always better to prevent this behavior from becoming an addiction rather than waiting until it is. If you or a loved one have began to go down a certain path, intervention is key. Preventing substance abuse is easier said than done, but definitely easier earlier rather than later in life.

Fitting Into The Mold

Drinking for teenagers is one part rebellion and two parts curiosity. In a perfect world, that first night/morning spent regretting certain actions should be enough of a lesson, but things like fitting in, a need to relax, party, or escape are just too tempting when alcohol and drugs are available. Whether it’s to fit in or to escape something in their life, many teenagers turn to alcohol or drug use. Often times, it is recreationally, but when grades start to slip or something worse happens, it is time to turn to adolescent treatment for your teen.

Talking to Your Teen

Talking to your child about drugs and alcohol can be difficult, though most parents, teachers, and schools try to explain the dangers of experimenting with drugs as best they can. At some point, your child will be offered drugs or alcohol and he or she will have to make a decision. The hope is that even if they do try something, he or she will make good decisions about overuse or repeated usage. Having a good relationship with your child will help facilitate these conversations about drug and alcohol use. In addition, taking the time to talk about what they want to do in the future, what colleges they are considering, and just asking them about their life, will foster a sense of responsibility in them.

Mending Mistakes

Though it would be great if every time a teen is dealing with drug or alcohol use, they were able to control it and make good decisions regarding avoiding addiction, that is not realistic. Sometimes, a teen or young adult will need rehabilitation. Substance abuse treatment facilities are a wonderful resource to help guide a teen back to his or her path to a bright future, as well as gain information to help better resist the urge to experiment with drugs or alcohol. Treatment can be used for a first offense or ongoing problem. When dealt with compassion and understanding, there is no wrong or right way to help your child deal with a substance abuse problem. The most important thing to remember is your child’s well being.

If you notice changes in your child, such as grades dropping or a new group of friends, talk to them. However, if substance abuse treatment is necessary, contact Options Family and Behavior Services. We offer many services to help your family, from adolescent day treatment to family counseling.

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