Addiction Treatment for Adolescents
We like to picture our teens as innocent beings who spend their time playing video games and planning for a future career that will see them happy and healthy. Being a young adult in today’s society, however, isn’t the same innocent and carefree time it once was. Our kids face situations we never considered and would have difficulty dealing with ourselves, let alone with the undeveloped skills available to teens. More children are being born with emotional health issues. When you add the stressors our teens face to this added chance of an emotional disorder, you end up seeing more and more teens turning to drugs or alcohol in order to cope with a world that doesn’t make sense to them. Rehab for young adults has become something we need.
The Young Mind
On the outside, teens are maturing quicker. We see these young individuals in adult bodies and sometimes forget that the bodies are housing undeveloped minds, complete with fewer coping skills, fewer life experiences, and many stressors. This is all in addition to the normal confusion present during adolescence, where a person wants the comforting of a child one minute and the independence of an adult the next. This combination can turn your teen into a volcano waiting to explode any moment. It is with this state of development that many teens find themselves coming into contact with alcohol or drugs. When this happens, things are set in motion that can ruin a young person’s life if not treated properly.
The Young Body
Rehab programs for young adults are dealing with a difficult situation. The young body of a teenager has not completely developed regardless of how much like an adult a teen may appear. Alcohol and drugs are metabolized differently and a young person faces the risk for addiction in a shorter amount of time, with a smaller amount of substance, than an adult. This means that it is essential that teen drug treatment takes place as early as possible. The good news is that because the young mind is not fully developed until about the age of twenty-five, behavioral counseling and any other type of behavioral modification is apt to facilitate success.
A Family Approach
Addiction is never solely about the individual. The entire family is changed and affected by the addiction. When the person facing addiction is a young adult, it is even more important that his family is involved in his treatment. Family counseling is often suggested as part of the treatment process. Many times, the family dynamic has become strained and everyone needs to learn new ways of interacting and communicating with each other. In many cases, parents feel at a loss in regards to what they should and should not do and need individual counseling in order to face their teen’s return to home. Rehab for young adults can be considered rehab for families in a way. Siblings may have felt neglected because of all the attention required by the addicted sibling. They may have been exposed to behaviors that put them at risk for such behaviors in the future. When families get involved with treatment, the whole family benefits, and the young adult returns to an environment that is stronger and more functional.
Girls and boys have different factors at play where drugs and alcohol are concerned. That means that a different treatment approach is necessary for each. By keeping our treatment focused on males, we are able to design a program that is proven to be the best for the reasons behind why a young man is likely to be at a rehab program for young adults. Boys are more likely to get involved in risky behaviors, which include drug and alcohol use, as a result of peer pressure. What often starts out as a group of friends playing adult and just trying to “have fun” gets out of hand and before he knows what is happening, his body has become dependent upon the substance. This isn’t the only reason male teens get involved in addictive behaviors, but it is the most common. If the young man also has emotional problems, it can increase the likelihood that he will continue the behavior when he realizes that for a short period after getting drunk or high, he doesn’t feel the emotional upset caused by his mental disorder. One of the most troubling things related to the use of drugs or alcohol in boys is that they are more likely to come into contact with legal trouble while under the influence. This is because of the male tendency to act outwardly, especially when inhibitions have been dulled by substances.
The First Step
As parents, admitting that your young adult may be heading down a path that can ruin their entire life is difficult. Seeking a drug treatment program, however, is one of the greatest gifts of love you can give him. Your teen has a long life ahead and he wants it to be a good one as much as you do. Facing the truth of the situation is something you and he can do to start him back on the path he has detoured from. As he learns new ways to handle the stresses of life and matures he will stand a chance of fighting the temptations that call to him. Facing the tendency to become addicted at this early stage in life and working to prevent it, helps avoid some of the pitfalls of addiction later in life. All it takes is the first step of contacting us. From there, we can help you and your young adult navigate the path ahead.