Why Young People Experiment with Substances
A young person’s need for attention and fitting in can often lead to substance abuse and addiction. Being young seems like it’s a carefree time in a person’s life, but it can be highly stressful. Just being in high school can cause a young person to worry about academics, cliques in school and young romance. One common thing that young people lack is experience, and due to a lack of brain development, they are impulsive and think act on what they think is best right now rather than how it’ll affect their future. The choices your son or daughter is making may lead to substance abuse, so it’s important to have open lines of communication with them.
Each year, thousands of young people die in accidents that could have been avoided. This is very common amongst college students, and often times drugs or alcohol were involved. From binge drinking to trying stunts while under the influence, these situations can be very dangerous, and most of the time the young person was just trying to get some laughs or impress their peers. One study showed that when young people did a driving simulator on their own, they were very careful about watching their speed and obeying traffic laws. When the young person was surrounded by their peers who watched them do the driving simulator, they were much more likely to speed and have risky driving habits.
The Influence of Celebrities
There’s still somewhat of a stigma that surrounds addiction, but there are some celebrities who are vocal about their past addiction and recovery. Unfortunately, there are many more stories about celebrities out drinking and doing drugs than there are those who speak out about addiction. As a young person, this can be very confusing. While drug and alcohol prevention courses teach young people about the dangers of substance abuse, they’re seeing people who are rich and famous that abuse substances on a regular basis. Some young people will associated drugs and alcohol with fame and fortune, so they disregard the messages they hear in prevention courses.
Communicating with Your Child
It’s virtually impossible to keep your child from ever taking a drink or a drug, but there are ways to curb the issue before it progresses. By letting your child know that they can talk to you about any issues they’re having or any questions they have about alcohol or drugs, they’re less likely to go experiment or let the issue progress to a point where it’s out of control. This also helps your son or daughter feel like they can talk to you if they feel they’ve developed a problem with substance abuse.
Here at Boca Recovery Center, we know that addiction is a progressive illness. Your child has the best chances of living a successful life the earlier they get help. Don’t hesitate to give us a call if your son or daughter has developed an issue with substance abuse.