How To Confront Teenage Drug Use

How-To-Confront-Teenage-Drug-UseAdolescence can be a difficult period for many. In addition to studies and hormones, teens must combat peer pressure, social trends and an enhanced curiosity – a recipe for trouble. In order to thwart negative exterior influence, it is important for parents to educate teens as to the dangers and consequences of their actions. If you suspect drug or alcohol use in your teen, it is vital that action be taken to address the issue in an effective and loving manner. Here’s how:


Confronting Teen Drug Use

1 – Know your battle by researching statistics and information pertaining to teenage drug use. The more informed you are on the topic, the better able you will be to get your point across. You may even call your local police precinct for additional help, as many keep brochures handy. Scare tactics may work on a minimal level – Care tactics are preferred.

2 – Designate a time to sit down and communicate with your teen in a calm and sober setting. Suggest a walk, drive, or sit down meal where you can enjoy some one-on-one time.

3 – Be respectful! Nobody likes to be talked down to. A parent who allows their emotions to dictate the conversation will enjoy little, to no success. Take deep breaths, speak calmly, and be direct.

4 – Tell your teen about your suspicions. Explain the signs you have noticed and request an explanation. If your teen is unable to offer reasoning for their behaviors or comes up with wild excuses, you can likely affirm these suspicions.

5 – Provide statistics and evidence to stress your point – Drugs are dangerous and unhealthy. Offer insight into the long-term effects of drug and alcohol abuse, including addiction, financial struggle, health issues and memory loss. Placing the issue into a real-world context may provide them with enough reason to stop. Dive into your teen’s personal goals and show how they will be affected if the drug/alcohol use persists.

6 – Share your own experiences with drugs and alcohol. Whether it’s having watched a friend deteriorate or your own dealings, it’s important that your teen know that they are not alone. A personal story will work to illustrate your point while offering a unique perspective on the topic.

7 – Listen! Preaching will get you nowhere if you are unable to communicate on an equal level. Ask why they choose to dabble with drugs. Is it peer pressure? Relaxation? Escape? Create a dialogue that is both safe and open. If you want your teen to be honest with you, they must feel comfortable to do so!

8 – Explain that you cannot approve of your teen’s drug use and that it must stop immediately. Outline consequences if they choose to continue but definitely offer assistance to help them quit.

Looking for a drug and alcohol rehabilitation facility? Contact Above it All drug & alcohol addiction treatment center today!

Read More About Teenage Drug Abuse and the Risks

Risks Factors For Teenage Drug Abuse

Unfortunately, teenage drug abuse is becoming more and more common throughout the United States. An array of factors play into the risks of teenage addiction – some of which can be controlled, and others which cannot. Major life changes, such as entering high school, moving to a new community or a graduation can all contribute to teenager’s tendency to experiment.

Home Environment and Family Lifestyle

Family dynamics can play a huge role on an adolescent’s behavior. Teens from households lacking proper boundaries and supervision are much more likely to dabble with drugs and alcohol than households with parental involvement. Adolescents left to their own devices for the majority of the day are afforded more time to partake in risky behaviors. A strong family bond is perhaps the best line of defense in teenage drug abuse prevention.

Personality Traits

Studies show that adolescents who are self-controlled and calm are less likely to dabble in drug and alcohol use than those with an aggressive personality. Teens who are afforded the ability to express their emotions and who feel that these emotions are heard are less likely to seek comfort through substance abuse. Adolescents showing a lack of interest in home and academics may also be at risk.

Environment and Community

Community plays a big role in drug abuse risk factors in teenagers. Kids who are raised in poor communities are more likely to dabble with alcohol and drug use. Research shows that close-knit communities actually work to decrease teenage substance abuse numbers – perhaps due to positive mentoring and bonding experiences throughout childhood. Mentors and role models offer support to teens facing stressful situations and transitions throughout adolescence.

Rules & School

School types are yet another risk factor in terms of teenage drug use. Educational facilities with a strict “no drug” policy see a decrease in student substance abuse numbers. Schools lacking proper regulation and supervision place teens at a much higher risk. These institutions are generally located in communities with fewer outreach programs and a lower socio-economic status.

Social & Peer Groups

Perhaps the highest risk factor for teenage substance abuse is the peer group that a teen associates with. Students who participate in school activities and sports are far less likely to engage in drug or alcohol use. Those who lack interest in school activities may belong to social groups that partake in drug use or other illicit behaviors. When an adolescent associates with a group that is known for trouble, the teen will likely begin exhibiting the same types of behaviors. Students with a focus on academics are also much less likely to experiment with substance abuse than those without.

Need Help?

Is your teen struggling with a substance abuse issue? Contact Above It All drug & alcohol addiction treatment center! With a team of seasoned addiction specialists available to address each patient’s individual needs, you can count on Above It All to have your teen on the fast track to recovery in no time. Call today for more information!

Get The Straight Dope On Drug Addiction: Answers To Frequently Asked Questions

Drug addiction has come to the foreground of public attention recently. Celebrities are more comfortable revealing their struggles with substance abuse, and the recent death of actor Cory Monteith from a combination of heroin and alcohol has underlined the importance of understanding that this issue is not something to be taken lightly. To shed some light on substance abuse, here are answers to some frequently asked questions.

Can Someone Get Addicted to Drugs Even if they Only Use Occasionally?

Addiction is not a one-time event. It’s a process that takes time to develop. No one starts using drugs intending to become an addict. Everyone thinks they will be the exception to the rule and somehow be smarter or luckier than the people who end up addicted to a drug. It doesn’t work that way.

Are Some People More Likely to Become Addicted to Drugs than Others?

There are certain risk factors that make it more likely that someone will become addicted to drugs. They do not guarantee that a person will become an addict, though.

  1. Family history of drug use
  2. Age of first-time use
  3. History of abuse, neglect or trauma in childhood
  4. Type of drug used

Why Do Addicts Continue to Use Drugs?

Many people who become addicted to drugs think that they can stop using any time they want, at least at first. Some people try to stop using on their own, but in most cases are not successful at achieving long-term sobriety. Over time, the drug use causes changes in a person’s brain that causes the person to have a lack of control over his or her impulse to use, despite the consequences. This is one of the telltale signs of addiction.

Can Someone Only Become Addicted to Street Drugs?

Prescription drug addiction is a growing problem. Even though a medication has been prescribed by a doctor, it doesn’t mean that the person taking it is protected from developing an addiction. If someone is taking more than the prescribed amount or taking the medication longer than would normally be expected, these are signs that the person may have developed a substance abuse issue.

Find a Drug Addiction Treatment Center

Are you concerned about yourself or a loved one’s drug use? Caring, effective treatment for addiction is available at our Lake Arrowhead rehab and detox center. We offer a holistic approach to treatment that addresses the needs of the whole person (mind, body, and spirit). Call us at 888-997-3006 to start the journey to healing today.

What Is Different With Adolescent Addiction Treatment

Drug rehab is focused on overcoming addiction, one day at a time, and rehab programs for teens share that same fundamental goal. But in adolescent drug rehabilitation programs, how they get there is different. For example, one of the biggest obstacles in treating teenage drug users is simply getting them to admit there’s a problem. Adolescents typically harbor deep feelings of denial, in part because they’ve only been using for a couple of years — they haven’t yet lost a spouse or a career because of addiction.

If they don’t seek help, of course, teen addicts may never have a spouse or career, and an overdose could end their lives before the age of 20. Adolescent addiction treatment programs specialize in bringing this message home to teens — sometimes through the use of peer counselors and other young adults with whom these clients can better relate.

Another unique offering of most adolescent drug rehab programs is education. Oftentimes a teen will have to go to treatment during the school year, or they may have already dropped out of school completely. All of our adolescent drug rehab programs offer G.E.D’s or daily tutoring to keep teens up-to-date with their studies while attending treatment. To learn more, call 888-634-4546.

The most important step is for the addicted teen to enter treatment. An addiction intervention may be necessary in convincing the adolescent there’s a problem. Because denial is so prevalent in younger addicts, concerned parents may have to force their child to seek help — threatening, for example, to kick them out of the family house if that doesn’t happen. Did you buy your son a new car for his 18th birthday? Threaten to take the keys back. You may be saving your child’s life.

Once a client enters adolescent drug rehabilitation, the process usually goes something like this:

  • Treatment begins with an intake process that will identify any particular issues, in addition to substance abuse that the client is struggling with – such as eating disorders or mental illness/dual diagnosis.
  • The next important step is detox, a difficult but necessary process that removes all drug toxins from the body.
  • Once the addict has detoxed, the intensive residential treatment stage (sometimes 30 days, sometimes longer) kicks into high gear, complete with individual/group therapy and family counseling. Unlike adult drug rehab centers, adolescent drug treatment includes an academic component. Teens will continue their studies while in rehab, ensuring they return home healthier, happier and still caught up with their classmates.
  • After the teen returns home, continued outpatient treatment is an essential part of a successful recovery. Relapse prevention requires a sustained effort, and outpatient care may include counseling or attending local 12-step support groups.

Why Do Teens Drink?

Let’s face facts; the majority of us probably dabbled with alcohol sometime during our adolescence. Though there are many who wait until the proper age to begin consumption, a great many teens make the decision to experiment with alcohol at least once prior to reaching the legal age. The reasons behind teenage drinking are many, and will differ from person to person.


Coming to grips with the reasons behind teen drinking can help you better communicate concerns with your own child. Many parents are able to relate to their teens once a more in-depth understanding has been obtained. A teen who feels that you do not understand the reasons behind their decisions will be less likely to respect your opinion. As such, it’s important for parents to research the topic thoroughly in an effort to bridge potential communication gaps.


It is never too early to begin discussing alcohol use with your child. Many teens will often gain access to alcohol at an early age, requiring parents to act “prematurely” to help avoid any issues down the road. Parents who are able to discuss this topic with their children prior to their first drink stand a better chance at making a lasting and meaningful impression.


Perhaps the biggest reason behind teenage drinking is peer pressure. Many teens may feel compelled to experiment with alcohol early on to fit in with friends or older peers. Other teens choose to drink due to the rush gained from breaking the law. Because alcohol is so socially accepted, many teens won’t even think twice about the possible consequences. Still, other teens may utilize alcohol as an escape from the pressures of school and family obligations.


The negative effects associated with underage drinking are bountiful. To begin, underage drinkers place themselves at risk for potential legal issues, should they get caught. In addition, many teens are also known to indulge in excess, as most are unaware of their limitations or when to call it a night. Alcohol poisoning is common among novice teen drinking who just don’t know when to quit. Drunk driving is yet another potential risk with teens who have vehicle access. Others may eventually gain a tolerance, become dependant, and require alcohol to avoid withdrawal symptoms.


When it comes to prevention techniques, communication is key. In most cases, one discussion is simply not enough to keep your teen from temptation. Make sure to engage in a regular dialog with your child to make certain they understand the risks and consequences associated with underage drinking. Take an interest in their life, and let them know you’re available to talk if they are having difficulty saying “no”.

Need Help?

If you suspect that your teen is suffering from an alcohol problem, our LA drug rehab counselors are available to help! Give us a call today, and find out what we can do to help your teen back on track towards the happy, healthy, and productive life they deserve.

Admitting A Minor To Drug Rehabilitation

In the United States, children under the age of 18 are considered minors. According to a recent survey performed by the National Survey on Drug Use & Health, a total of 11.6% of adolescents 12-17 are admitted drug users. In some instances this drug use can be attributed to underlying mental disorders. In other cases, use is based on simple experimentation or a lack of supervision on the part of the parents. In this entry, we will discuss some tips and tricks to help get your teen the help they deserve.

1 – Communicate your concerns. In many cases, opening the dialogue between parent and teen can offer results not seen with more immediate and drastic measures. Not only will your teen appreciate the effort; they will be more likely to discuss their own thoughts and concerns regarding the topic. In an effort to avoid consequences, teens will often hide feelings from their parents. By eliminating the parental barrier of authority, your teen may feel more inclined to work with you, rather than against you.

2 – Do your research. Before diving into professional help, it’s important to educate yourself regarding the type and degree of drug use you are dealing with. The more knowledgeable you are on the topic, the better equipped you will be to address it. Once you’ve properly assessed the situation, you will be better able to determine whether professional treatment is the right road to take.

3 – Ask your teen to attend treatment. Some teens may agree without much persistence. Others may choose to attend following an intervention. Be sure to communicate that your teen’s “loose ends” (work, school, pets, etc.) will be attended to so they feel comfortable choosing treatment without fear of consequence.

4 – If your teen is unwilling to accept help for their addiction, they can be committed by parental consent, or a court order. Parents and guardians have the option to enroll minors into rehabilitation without patient consent. Teens who have found themselves in legal trouble may find themselves with a court ordered ticket to treatment as part of the sentencing.

5 – Support your teen throughout the recovery process. Rehabilitation is a difficult period for people of all ages. By supporting and involving yourself in your teen’s recovery, you will be creating a solid base from which to help them succeed both within and outside the rehabilitation environment.

Need Help?

If you have a teen struggling with drug use, our Above It All addiction specialists are on-hand to help! Give us a call today and let our certified rehabilitation team help your teen back on the path to the happy, productive, fulfilling, and sober lifestyle they deserve.

The Big Talk – Teens & Drugs

When it comes to parent / teen conversations, drugs are likely second to sex on the list of topics you’d like to avoid. Though you may find the subject taboo or awkward to speak about, it is important that the job be done in a calm, educational and positive manner. By taking the time to plan ahead, you can actually make the experience a fun and interactive discussion, providing each party with the confidence and peace of mind they deserve. In this entry, we will outline a few tips and tricks to help you through the conversation.

Step 1 – Ask your teen to put aside some time to speak with you. Tell them that there is something you’ve been meaning to discuss with them, while communicating the fact that they are not in any trouble. Starting the dialog in this manner puts the ball in their court, and will likely peak their interest in the conversation.

Step 2 – Begin by telling your teen about your own encounters with drugs. If you do not have any personal experiences with drugs, you can recall stories of friends or relatives who do… but be discreet. There is not right or wrong in this conversation. By opening yourself up to your child in an honest way, you will likely gain their respect and confidence. Avoid the horror stories and glamour and stick to the facts.

Step 3 – Ask for feedback and find out what they think about your experiences. Opt for open-ended inquiries that will allow them to open up to you about their feelings and thoughts on the matter.

Step 4 – In a calm and loving manner, simply ask your teen about their drug experiences. Make sure to declare the conversation punishment-free and hope for the best. In order to have an open dialog with your teen, they must feel comfortable communicating with you. A swift punishment for admitting to past drug use will only close them off in the future.

Step 5 – Do your best to react with compassion and empathy. If your teen does not have any experience with drugs, commend them for it in a calm and positive fashion. If they do, your reaction should remain composed. Discuss the circumstances behind their usage to find out more about their interest and history.

Step 6 – Get the facts. Going into these types of conversation without a grounded education will only serve in making you appear silly. Treat this situation as you would a business meeting; with preparation and a healthy dose of respect.

Step 7 – Whether or not your teen is taking drugs, it’s important to offer your support. Outline the potential consequences and ways to avoid future use. If you suspect a real problem, it’s important to consider the possibility of treatment. The quicker you can nip the problem, the better chance your teen will have of a healthy future.

If you’re interested in learning more about your teen’s available alcohol and drug treatment options, Above It All is here to help. Give our addiction counselors a call to find out about our drug treatment plans, philosophies, and financing options. Raising a teen is hard enough without the presence of drugs and alcohol. Get the facts and help you deserve today!

Getting Addiction Help When You’re Young

Making the decision to get sober is already a difficult thing. It’s already hard enough sometimes to hit a bottom when were older let alone when were young. Since alcoholics have a tendency to defend our right to drink and use to the death many of us don’t receive or ask for alcohol addiction help until we are older. However these days there are a lot more young people getting sober through the help of places like AA, or California rehab centers. We see more and more young people getting here at such an early age such as 16,17,18 years old or even younger that work the steps, go to some sort of drug rehab facility in LA, and as a result of one or both things achieve long lasting recovery. It’s a beautiful thing. some people that get sober young might have the lingering questions such as was it just a phase?, did I get sober too young?, do I have another drinking spree left in me because I’m so young?, or how can I be or admit I’m  an alcoholic when I’ve never had a legal drink? We as alcoholics are always trying to prove ourselves exceptions to the rules or terminally unique. These thoughts to a young alcoholic are only icing on the cake when it comes to trying to be the exception. While it might seem more difficult the fact is that if you get the opportunity to get sober young and you take it you too can recover the same way all of us have. Not only that but there will have been most likely less wreckage caused and an amazing long life ahead of you. There are several young people’s events and meetings available to you if you’re young and ready to get sober. As young people in recovery we don’t suffer through sobriety. Instead we insist on enjoying every second of it. For we are grateful, know how blessed we are, and know that our sober lives are way too valuable to take for granted.

Help for Parents of Addicts: Alarming Trends from The NIDA

Looking for help for Parents of Addicts? You are not alone. According to the most recent findings from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, drug use among teens in the United States is on the rise – especially in young teens. The Monitoring the Future (MTF) survey has measured drug, alcohol, and cigarette use and related attitudes among adolescent students in the U.S. since 1975.  At its inception, the survey included high school seniors only, but in 1991 it was expanded to include 8th- and 10th-graders as well.

One major factor thought to be impacting the current statistics is the overall lowering in perceived risk, perceived social approval, and perceived availability for several drugs. The more risky or less accepted a drug is thought to be, the less likely it will be used by teens. Perceived availability often correlates with social approval – meaning that a drug that’s readily available is considered socially acceptable and will be more commonly used.

Teens don’t just consider the physical risks when using drugs, but also emotional, social/relational, and aspirational factors. Physical risks include may include addiction, and social risks include disappointing friends or family, entry into long term addiction program and losing friends. Aspirational risks include losing a job, or getting in trouble with the law. All of these perceived risks – physical, emotional, social, and aspirational – are different with each drug, and contributing factors include things like anti-drug campaigns, family counseling and discussion.

The following information was gleaned from the most recent study may be frightening to parents, but you will do well to be armed with this information and be aware of behavioral changes in children. If you suspect your young teen is using drugs or alcohol, please contact our addiction counselors for information on affordable rehab.

Daily Marijuana use is on the rise in all age groups. Among 12th graders included in the study, use is now at its highest point since the early 1980s. The study also found that perceived risk of regular marijuana use is definitely on the decline, which may predict a future upward trend in use.

Second to marijuana, prescription and over the counter medications account for the drugs most often abused by 12th graders. While non-medical use of Vicodin has decreased slightly, OxyContin use remains steady across the 9th and 12 graders, and actually increased in 10th graders over the past 5 years. Non-medical use of Adderall and over-the-counter cough and cold medicines among 12th graders remains high.

After declining for several years, use of the dangerous party drug Ecstasy has risen among 8th and 10th graders. From 2009 to 2010, lifetime use of ecstasy among 8th graders increased from 2.2% to 3.3% which also demonstrates a marked drop in perceived risk in using the drug.

The challenge in curtailing teen drug use is that the so-called “benefits” of using a given drug spread faster than perceived risks. The “benefits” of a drug are immediately evident, and electronic forms of communication like chats and text messages allow these “positive” experiences spread quickly among groups of young people.  Gathering information about the drug’s risks takes time, but when aggressively distributed through discussion with friends and family, the results are dramatic and positive.