Intervening on adolescents and young adults requires special skills. These developmental years are often difficult for parents, but addiction and mental health problems can quickly make the situation overwhelming.
We have many years of experience dealing with younger patients, providing crisis management, conflict resolution and multi-stage treatment options. We also have the ability to coordinate legal and psychological services.
Modern society exposes young people to a great variety of drugs, in addition to alcohol, and many have the potential to cause ongoing psychological problems. Casual use and experimentation can quickly lead to major problems.
We work with a wide range of treatment providers, ranging from wilderness-style treatment programs to psychologically-intensive programs for co-occurring disorders, such as bi-polar, anxiety, depression, ADHD, delusions and more. We will help you navigate the maze of treatment options and providers to find the most appropriate program for your family.
An excerpt from the book, Love First:
Young people can successfully hide their use of alcohol or other drugs from their parents for years. Parents often ignore the symptoms of drug use or dismiss them as normal adolescent behavior. But experiencing serious and repeated problems isn’t a normal part of growing up. If you suspect an adolescent has and alcohol or other drug problem but are not sure, look at our guide: “Warning Signs of Adolescent Alcohol or Other Drug Use”… and review the symptoms of abuse and addiction.
Check the warning signs of adolescent alcohol and drug use. Click here.
In dealing with the issue of chemical dependency in adolescents, it’s important to think about and talk about the problem as a family issue, as opposed to an issue with the teen alone. We must all work through this problem together, including involvement with the treatment center.
Adolescent Warning Signs
Alcohol and drug problems in young people can go undetected by family members for long periods of time. Some research shows that a drug problem can exist for as long as six years before parents recognize it. Part of the problem is parental denial and not knowing the signs of abuse and addiction. The following is a list of the most common symptoms of addiction in teenagers:
- drop in grade point average
- missing or skipping school
- drop old friends for a new group of friends
- attraction to the drug culture is reflected through clothes, jewelry, music, paraphernalia
- valuables or money missing from the home
- alcohol or mood-altering prescription drugs missing
- disregarding curfews
- not coming home from school
- avoiding questions about activities or money
- tired-looking and sleeping more than usual
- frequently coughing, sniffling or not feeling well
- isolating from the family
- withdrawn emotionally
- avoiding family activities
- red eyes
- breath smells of alcohol
- irritable and on edge
- losing interest in extra-curricular activities and sports
- decline in personal hygiene
- memory loss
- avoids introducing friends to family
- angry, defensive outbursts
- violent behavior toward others
- dishonest and secretive
- drop in body weight
- mood-swings or depression
- suspicious phone calls
- fired from after-school job
- suspended from school
- getting in trouble with the police
As a parent, you must be the one to take action. Care must be taken in interpreting these warning signs. You may contact us by email or call us at 888-220-4400.