Why Do Teens Use Alcohol and Drugs?

Teens are especially susceptible to alcoholism and drug addiction near Fort Lauderdale. Sadly, young adults who begin using alcohol and drugs early on are more likely to struggle with substance abuse for the rest of their lives. With early intervention and rehab, it is possible to make a full recovery and get on the path to a healthy, successful life. Teenagers use alcohol for many reasons, including social influences, self-medication, and natural insecurity. Keep reading to learn more.

Social Influences

Alcoholism and drug addiction are so prevalent in teens largely because they are more likely to be surrounded by a peer group that pressures them into substance abuse. Juveniles can begin using drugs as early as grade school. If they are frequently left unsupervised by parents or teachers, substance abuse can quickly turn into alcoholism or addiction. Teenagers frequently encounter drugs and alcohol at parties and social events. Often, their pressure to fit in leads them to make decisions that they would never otherwise make on their own.

Self-Medication

Teenagers can also turn to drug or alcohol abuse as a way to self-medicate feelings that they do not completely understand. Mental illnesses like depression, anxiety, and schizophrenia tend to surface during the young adult years. Teens may find themselves battling insomnia, unexplainable sadness, or feelings of isolation. Drugs and alcohol offer many a way to temporarily escape these unpleasant feelings. Even mentally healthy teenagers feel naturally insecure and uncomfortable with their looks, athletic ability, or school performance. Drugs and alcohol offer a way to cope.

Simple Boredom

Many young adults crave excitement and constant stimulation, which makes drugs and alcohol so appealing. If your son or daughter has few extracurricular activities or does not appear to be engaged in schoolwork or sports, he or she may seek older friends outside of school. Teenagers are naturally rebellious, so enforcing too strict of a schedule upon teenagers can inspire them to act out.

The Parent’s Guide to Teen Drug Abuse

Do you believe your teenager could benefit from drug rehab in Fort Lauderdale? Whether your son or daughter may already be using drugs or you simply want to educate yourself, it is a good idea to familiarize yourself with the signs of substance abuse and addiction. A parent always knows a child best, and experts encourage parents to start conversations with their teens if they notice any signs of trouble. Keep reading to learn what you should watch for when it comes to teen drug abuse, including behavioral shifts, health changes, and psychological warnings.

Behavioral Shifts

Behavioral shifts are one of the first signs of teen drug abuse or addiction. Eventually, drug abuse catches up with anyone, and even occasionally using illegal substances can affect a teen’s grades, job, and relationships. Many teens will start skipping class or getting in trouble at school. Others may miss work or appear obviously unmotivated. Parents are usually made aware of these problems when teachers, bosses, or friends complain.

Health Changes

If your teen’s health has been declining and there is no medical explanation, he or she may need addiction recovery help. Physical signs of drug use include small pupils, bloodshot eyes, and frequent nosebleeds. Many teens also allow their physical appearances to deteriorate. They may stop taking regular showers, eating solid meals, or sleeping through the night. As a result, teens can lose or gain significant amounts of weight. He or she may also have unusual smells on the body, breath, or clothing.

Psychological Warnings

Personality changes and mood shifts are also signs of drug addiction or substance abuse. Your son or daughter may be noticeably irritable or become angry for little or no reason. Some teens can also appear hyperactive or agitated, while others seem unmotivated or unable to focus. If your teen seems withdrawn, anxious, or paranoid, he or she may be using drugs. Appearing lethargic or spaced out is another psychological sign of drug abuse.

Preparing to Talk to Your Teen

Teen therapy near Fort Lauderdale is an essential part of helping many teenagers recover from alcoholism or addiction. Watch this video to learn how you should prepare to talk to your son or daughter about drug and alcohol abuse.

It can seem overwhelming to confront your son or daughter about alcoholism or addiction. Instead of simply demanding that he or she get immediate treatment for substance abuse or face severe consequences, it helps to address the root of a teen substance problem. Making sure you understand why he or she is feeling isolated, rebellious, or unhappy is key to helping your child succeed in substance abuse treatment.

Introducing Clinical Director Jenna Wilson

If your teen loved one is suffering from addiction or alcoholism in Fort Lauderdale, rehab may be your best option. Dr. Jenna Wilson is proud to be the Clinical Director of The Bougainvilla House, an outpatient teen drug and alcohol counseling center.

Dr. Wilson is dedicated to providing comprehensive outpatient therapy to area teens dealing with alcohol abuse and drug abuse. Dr. Wilson is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, or LMFT. She also holds both a Ph.D. and a Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Dr. Wilson has conducted extensive research on hope and substance abuse, which she has presented both nationally and internationally. She has years of experience treating drug addiction and alcoholism in both teens and adults. Dr. Wilson believes that substance abuse is a complex issue, which is why she also specializes in helping with trauma, daily stressors, life transitions, mental health, physical or sexual abuse, and employment and housing challenges. Dr. Wilson is dedicated to creating a safe and therapeutic space for all teens.