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SUBSTANCE ABUSE IN TEENS

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Walt Oleksy, Oct 3, 2013.

  1. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    For those who may have teenagers with drug problems or you wonder if maybe they have them, this article could be of interest.

    Recognizing the Signs of Substance Abuse in Teens

    Teens are not adults, yet they often have to make adult decisions about drugs and alcohol. Try to be aware of the pressures teens face and learn the signs of substance abuse. If your child has a problem with alcohol or drugs, take action. Your doctor can help.
    Why Do Teens Abuse Drugs?

    Some of the most common reasons kids try drugs include:
    · Peer pressure. Teens often face intense pressure from their friends to try drugs.
    · Social anxiety. Teens may think drug use will help them fit in. Or, they may believe it will make them more relaxed and outgoing.
    · Curiosity. It's normal for teens to want to find out about drugs for themselves.
    · Problems with school, parents, or sex. Teens often assume that getting high will solve all their problems.
    What Are the Warning Signs?

    It can be hard to spot drug use in teens. That's because their lives are often in turmoil. Also, many signs of drug abuse may be signs of other problems. These may include depression and eating disorders. You should be concerned if your teen:
    · Falls behind in school. A drastic drop in grades may signal a serious problem.
    · Withdraws from family and old friends.
    · Gives up former activities, such as sports or music.
    · Lies or steals.
    · Takes risks.
    · Seems moody or depressed.
    · Is very hostile.
    · Gets in trouble with the law or at school.
    To help keep your kids away from drugs:

    · Spend time with your teen. Do something together at least once a week.
    · Don't be afraid to ask questions. Find out where your children are going and who their friends are.
    · Try to be there when your children get home. The peak time for drug abuse is between 4:00 and 6:00 p.m.
    · Don't lecture. Teens need to know they can come to you for help.
    · Be a good listener.
    What You Can Do

    Talk to your teen about drug use. Try not to react too strongly. Most of all, listen to what your teen has to say. If your teen is in trouble, talk to someone you trust. That might be your health care provider, a school counselor, or local mental health clinic. Many school districts now have drug abuse counselors who can help. Or, contact one of the many groups that deal with drug abuse.
     
  2. BruceMC

    BruceMC Beloved Grand Eagle

    I think what you have to remember is that the number 1 gateway drug leading to the use of harder drugs like cocaine and heroin is nicotine. According to Dr Gabor Mate, almost all cocaine and heroin addicts are also nicotine addicts. Certainly poor bonding with parents, in particular the mother, during the first 6 years of life, is undoubtedly the number one precondition leading to drug addiction and behavioral addictions later in life. Really hard to undo brain damage acquired in the womb and during the first 6 years of life by "talking to your teenagers" at 15 or 16. The damage was already done long before then. ADHA disorder is also a very strong precondition for the development of behavioral and drug addiction later in life. Almost 100% of Dr Mate's hardcore drug addicted female patients were molested before their 10th birthday, often repeatedly by a close family member. Interesting too how Dr Sarno notes that his worst TMS patients, the ones with the greatest repressed rage, were also the ones who were molested as kids.
     
  3. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    I'm so glad my mother never smoked. I did between college and the army but had hay fever so I
    gave it up. Cigarettes really are "nails in the coffin."
     
  4. BruceMC

    BruceMC Beloved Grand Eagle

    Yes, Walt, and nicotine and alcohol are both legal and - in some circles at least - socially approved (although that seems to be changing for this generation). It just isn't cool anymore to smoke cigarettes and be loud and drunk in public. The important thing I think to remember about addictions - both chemical (i.e. drugs) and behavioral (i.e. problem gambling, workaholism, compulsive video game playing, risk taking etc.) is that addictive behavior starts from an addictive personality that's really, really hard to change. Dr Mate says he feels extremely lucky is he can cure 5% of his addicted patients. Seems like kids with ADHA disorder are really prone to alcohol, drugs, gambling and compulsive sex because they always have to fill up a blank spot in their personalities with something that keeps them from dealing with underlying emotional problems that developed during early childhood (not saying that they can't develop later on, but that's the most common scenario). Speaking psycho-historically, I wonder if kids born between the Cuban Missile crisis in 1962 and the end of the Cold War c. 1980 were more prone to ADHA disorder than previous generations? I know, I know, the Great Depression and WWII were rough, but the media cyber-world wasn't with you every waking moment that way it is now. I find that young people who've come into adulthood since 9/11 have a new set of stressors that differential them from War Babies or those shaped by Vietnam. I guess it just keep changing!
     
  5. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    I was a 1930s Depression Era baby and grew up with relatives drinking and gambling and saw how it wrecked lives.
    I learned from their bad examples to be a very moderate drinker and don't gamble at all, not even the lottery.

    And I never got hooked on smoking. I smoked a little during college and the army but had hay fever so
    I gave it up.

    Maybe all that is why I'm 83 now and not even taking an aspirin or Advil for anything.
    I practice TMS and it is keeping me pain-free.
     
  6. BruceMC

    BruceMC Beloved Grand Eagle

    From what I've read, it appears that drinking was a lot worse of a problem, at least among the working classes, in the 19th century. That was one of the pushes behind Prohibition. Today, it doesn't seem like most people think drinking and smoking cigarettes are "cool" or a sign of being grownup anymore (not say that there still aren't a lot of alcoholics on the road and in the workplace).
     
  7. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    Maybe we thought smoking was "cool" because we saw actors smoking so much in the movies.
    But I later learned that most actors simply don't know what to do with their hands when they're
    in a scene, so they smoke. Now that they can't smoke in movies, have you noticed what actors do
    with their hands? Men often put them in their pockets and women carry a purse, or either of them
    has a book or newspaper in their hand? In British movies, it's a cup of tea.

    Of course, lots of people smoke because they're nervous. They should look into their repressed emotions instead of lighting up
    another nail in their...
     
  8. hecate105

    hecate105 Well known member

    Also - and many might disagree with this - there is drug use - as well as drug abuse. in the same way many people drink alcohol and don't become alcoholics or drink & drive, many people use drugs and don't abuse them or have problems from them. It is important for parents to keep this in mind - as many kids do try drugs from curiosity, most of them discontinuing it sooner or later. Keeping an eye on them and trying to have open channels of communication are very important. But having parent/s who jump on you, sniffing for glue, checking your arms for needle marks etc is counter-productive! (as a stoned teenager - it freaked me out!) I had abuse. an alcoholic father, divorce and mayhem in my childhood, but I used drugs and alcohol without abusing them. But I abused myself with more than 20 years of pain - which - paradoxically, put me off all drugs after being bombarded with painkillers (mostly opiates!!- go figure!) by well-meaning, but ignorant doctors...
    That said - there is a huge correlation between abused children and drug and alcohol abuse. But I think we should be protecting our kids from the abuse first and foremost.
     
  9. BruceMC

    BruceMC Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hecate, I think you might want to read Gabor Mate's book on substance abuse in the Vancouver slums where he has his outpatient clinic. It's entitled In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts (2008) and has an analysis of what separates someone who uses a drug and doesn't become addicted and a person who takes one drink or uses a drug once and instantly becomes an addict for life. Dr Mate, you'll find, agrees with your analysis about the role of early childhood development in the formation of the future addict's personality and his or her predisposition to become addicted. Dr Mate notices that 100% of his female hardcore addict patients (the ones hooked on opioids, amphetamines, and cocaine) were sexually abused as children, often, and tragically enough, by a close family member. This is in keeping with Dr Sarno's own observation that the most intractable cases of lower back pain he has encountered have occurred in patients who had endured sexual abuse in childhood. I think the locus classicus is Dr Sarno's description of the case of Helen. I think it's recounted in Healing Back Pain, but he mentions it elsewhere in his talks and other books. It's a question of degree of course, but not having a safe place in the home during the first 6 years of a child's life seems to alter the biochemistry of their brain in such a way that drugs or alcohol will give them that feel good feeling they've always lacked. Hence, they keep using drugs or alcohol to feel fully human and won't stop even though they consciously know it's destroying them. Part of that universal need for transcordification that Steve Ozanich talks about in the Great Pain Deception (2001)? In other words, it's not a drug that creates an addict, but an underlying addictive personality that developed quite early in life.
     
    hecate105 likes this.
  10. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    I had a mild case of sexual abuse when I was a teenager, from a distant aunt who got too friendly
    with me one night in the back seat of a car when we were driving back from a family reunion.

    She told me, "Please don't tell anyone." Typical, from what I learned later.

    I did repress that bad experience but think it did affect me in how I felt about girls growing up.
    That and divorces in the family, mom marrying and divorcing like she was Elizabeth Taylor,
    made me so cautious about marrying that I never did.

    Oh well, I discovered dogs. Few wives could be as faithful.

    But our TMS pain goes all the way back. We just have to forget about getting help from doctors
    or shrinks or chiropractors or drugs or alcohol and find our own way out of the pain.
    It's great when you really learn who you are and how you can heal yourself.
     
    hecate105 likes this.
  11. hecate105

    hecate105 Well known member

    You're right there Walt. My mum's on her 3rd marriage as is her sister, both brothers divorced, my dad had 2 marriages and still couldn't be faithful... I married my husband and we will stay married forever (22 years so far) we have a totally different take on faithfulness and dedication. We understand that it is hard to spend your life with someone (lets face it we are all terribly annoying!) so we work bloomin' hard at it. It is our priority - cos our happiness is our priority. And I couldn't of had a more supportive mate thru all my pain problems. He is even doing the programme on this site - cos he thinks we all need to sort our 'stuff' out - not just wait until we are in agony & ill. But it is a case of being blessed if you do meet the 'right' person, with any of my exs I would not of been so lucky...
     

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