Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Kids Do Not Perceive Drugs as Dangerous or Addictive

Kids who begin to use drugs think they will not become addicted. But addiction is a disease characterized by a compulsive drug-seeking behavior regardless of the consequences. Research conducted by the National Institute on Drug Abuse clearly shows that virtually all drugs that are abused have a profound effect on the child’s brain. Prolonged use of many drugs including cocaine, heroin, marijuana and amphetamines can change the brain in fundamental and long-lasting ways, resulting in drug craving and addiction.

If and when a child drug abuser becomes addicted depends on the individual. Research shows that children who use alcohol and tobacco are more likely to use marijuana than children who do not use these substances. Children who use marijuana are more likely to use other addictive drugs. Certain genetic, social, and environmental risk factors make it more likely that certain individuals will become addicted to alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs. These include:

• children of alcoholics who, according to several studies, may have inherited genes that make them more prone to addiction, and who may have had more stressful upbringings;
• sensation-seekers who may like the novelty of feeling drunk or high;
• children with psychological problems, such as conduct disorders, who self-medicate to feel better;
• children with learning disabilities, and others who find it difficult to fit in or become frustrated learning;

• children of poverty who lack access to opportunities to succeed and to resources when they're in trouble.

The more risk factors children have, the greater their vulnerability.

Regardless of how "cool" drugs may look, there is nothing glamorous about the reality of addiction, a miserable experience for the addict and everyone around him. Addiction causes an all-consuming craving for drugs, leading a caring person to destroy relationships, work, and family life and many times getting caught up with the criminal system.

If you suspect your child is using illegal drugs, abusing alcohol or prescription drugs, seek professional help and remember these three C's: that 'you didn't Cause, can't Control and can't Cure' your child's problems. But you can and must take charge if you find your child involved with drugs and alcohol. The earlier you act upon your child’s addiction problems the better will be the outcome for your child.

Don’t let your child become a statistic. Reach out to us.

Inspirations for Youth and FamiliesAddiction Treatment for Teens: 1-888-757-6237

Cove Center for Recovery Addiction Treatment for adults and young adults: 1-888-387-6237

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