Teen Drug Abuse

Have you found that a troubled teen in your life has been struggling with drugs and or alcohol abuse? For many parents finding out that their son or daughter has been struggling with teen drug abuse is a catastrophic revelation. Thoughts of failure, disappointment, guilt, and embarrassment flood a parents mind. However, you must remember that you are not the only parent to face such a situation. And more importantly, many families have overcome teen drug abuse in the past.

We attempt to educate people about why teens begin using, what they are using, and how those drugs are affecting teens physically, socially, and mentally.

 

The teen drug problem:

The teen drug problem in America has drawn the attention many parents in recent years. According to the 1998 National Household Survey on Teen Drug Abuse, nearly ten percent of teens between the ages of twelve and seventeen used illegal drugs – a number less than 11.4 percent from just the year prior – including marijuana (8.3%), cocaine (0.8%) and inhalants (1.1%) (SAMHSA, 1998). Statistics for 2002 reflect a slight drop in teenage drug usage to 8.3 percent for overall consumption of all illicit drugs. Still heading the list as most commonly used drug for troubled teens was marijuana (75% of all teen users) followed by cocaine (0.9%) and marijuana combined with one or more other drugs (20%). Cigarettes were found to be a strong precursor for troubled teens to who used illicit drugs, representing about eight times the number to those teens who smoked (48.1%) and those teens who did not (6.2%). Gender differences play a role as well amongst teenagers, with a greater majority of male teens using illegal drugs (12.3%) than their female teenage counterparts (10.9%) (SAMHSA, 2002).

Alcohol, a legal drug restricted to teens only by age, proves both plentiful, available and popular among teens aged twelve through seventeen, with both casual and binge drinking reflecting a higher percentage of usage in college-age teens (GDCADA, 2004).