Addiction is not definitely a pleasure! It is grief. One of the biggest trouble happens when you find out that your son, or daughter, or teen brother is addicted. It both scares and makes you feel angry with him/her. Anyway, your main wish at that moment is to cure your beloved one.
What is the main difference between the adult addicted person and addicted teenager?
The thing is in psychology. Adolescent brain differs much from the adult brain. Scientists say that the human’s brain is constantly developing until the age of 25 or so. Psychologists claim that the psychological development of a person is over at about 21. Mental specialists do not use some techniques of influence until you are old enough. There exist several stages for them. The brain of a teen is rather vulnerable to taking risky activities. The thing is that while growing, the parts of brains, which have to control their behavior, are constantly changing. Teens seem to feel some inner need for behaving risky (because healthy decision-making is not developed at that age), which, evidently, may push them to take drugs or abusive drinking behavior. This process of brain growth may also reduce the response of an adolescent to treatment activities, which are, though, quite helpful if used for adult treatment.
Taking into account these facts, you can figure out that traditional psychological approaches to addiction treatment may not be appropriate for their unbalanced mentality. Special teenage rehab facilities CONSIDER these peculiarities and develop special programs of rehabilitation for teens. It is your responsibility to choose one from good teen rehabs.
To tell the truth, quite high. If we analyze a recent survey, we would see that the number of teens and college students, who are consuming drugs and alcohol is constantly growing.
In the Monitoring the Future survey, researches claim that about one-fifth of 8th graders have used illegal drugs and alcohol. If we talk about the students of the 10th graders, this figure grows to two fifths. NIDA (The National Institute on Drug Abuse) published a report, which says that only 30% of teenagers have not tried alcohol before being their senior year in high school; 60% have never smoked a cigarette. About a half (50%) have tried illicit substances, including drugs, which 20% of teens bought with prescription drug recreationally, or for nonmedical purposes. Specialists from rehab facilities for teens claim that the most common illicit psychoactive substances used by teenagers are nicotine, alcohol, and cannabis. NIDA specialists also report that adolescent is not prone to withdrawal syndromes and strong cravings.
What are the underlying reasons for a teen to develop an addiction?
First, problems in communication at home. Many parents do not know that their children lack attention or suffer from misunderstanding. They often are busy and do not pay enough attention to what their children do. Sometimes it happens vice versa: parents put their child under too much pressure and teen finds relaxation in drugs or alcohol. They perceive this as the possibility to make away with stress. The rule is to be attentive to the needs of your child. Do not scold him/her for everything; try to understand the reasons for his/her behavior. Communicate with your child more and do not be afraid to apologize to him/her.
Second, low self-esteem. Self-image issue is quite important nowadays, especially with the development of the social networking sites, where people post how happy they are and, by doing this, they set a tone of an ideal life image. For a sensitive mind of a teen, this may be biting not to correspond to that image. Regulate the time your child spends in front of the screen and try to control the content he/she uses. (Do not forget about your child’s personal space at the same time!) In addition, it is important to talk to your child about his/her achievements and explain that Instagram photos, money and brand new gadgets cannot show the level of happiness.
Thirdly, the influence of peers. If your child wants to answer the description of “popular” among his peers, he/she will take pains to do so. While being a teenager, it is very important how society accepts you. Try to inform your child that social roles would change soon, but bad habits and their consequences would stay.
What are the main criteria to choose teenage rehabilitation center?
If you are looking through teenage rehab facilities and cannot decide which one to choose, it is quite ok. You as any other normal parent feel the responsibility for the right choice of the center, where your children would get help in the rehabilitation process. Do not worry if you have doubts, it is essential to wish to find the best for the member of your family. The main tip here is to look for programs of rehabilitation for teens, because, as we have said before, they usually differ from those for adults.
Teenagers perceive all the signals from the outer world from their critical point of view. Specialists usually divide this perception into three levels. They are physical, mental and emotional. All of them are equally important. Rehabs for teens specialize in both medical and psychological treatment. The best teenage rehab facilities try to root out grounds and conditions, which were the reason for teens’ addiction.
The very important thing is to make a teen feel he is not alone and the adults do not criticize him/her, but support, love and take care. Be ready that teen may experience depression, mood swings and anxiety while detoxing. Never show irritation or dissatisfaction.
Find out if the facility provides individual and group teen counseling. The teen may doubt the authority of parents or doctors, but he would definitely believe to his peer, who faced the same problem. Sometimes this ends with a beautiful friendship after recovery. Teen feels safe to share his feelings among the people of the same age, suffering from the same problems. The other important point here is if the rehab program includes gender-specific treatment. It is important for teens because they are usually shy to express their feeling and talk about physical problems with the opposite sex.
Try to learn more about what teens can do in the rehab center. While being on the inpatient program, your child needs to entertain him/herself, when he feels better and has some spare time. Do not be shy to ask if the facility can organize some activities such as painting, music playing, equitation, etc.
Do not forget that while being in a teenage rehabilitation center, your child falls behind the school. Ask if your child can have some courses in the facility itself so that he/she would not be kicked out of school.
About the Author
Jeffrey Buckley is a blogger who investigates human health issues and behaviorist anthropology. He researches substance abuse problems and the ways to overcome addictions.