Having a teenager suffering from the disease of addiction can bring along many different emotional challenges. It’s never easy to watch the child you’ve raised go down this path of self-destruction. Your teen may seem as though she’s making terrible, selfish and self-centered decisions, but it’s important to remember that she’s sick. The disease of addiction is cunning, baffling and powerful, but its characteristics are often amplified in teenagers because their brains haven’t fully developed. If you want your teen to recover from addiction and are planning on staging an intervention, it’s always important to consult family intervention specialists first so that you handle the situation in the best way possible.
As your child grows and reaches different stages of her life, she’s discovering the world and trying to figure out who she is. When children reach their teen years, their hormones begin to change, which often causes them to be confused about their feelings. Some teens turn to drugs or alcohol as a form of self-medication to deal with such feelings. Teens are also naturally impulsive and rebellious, so it’s not uncommon for teens to begin drinking or using drugs to fit in with their peers because they’re seeking approval. Although many teens experiment with different substances, some may be predisposed to the disease of addiction, and the situation can escalate quickly. There are also those who begin using these substances recreationally, but then the abuse turns into a full-blown addiction.
One of the reasons most countries have a legal drinking age is because the human brain doesn’t fully develop until people are in their 20s, specifically the frontal lobe of the brain. The frontal lobe has a variety of responsibilities, some of which include controlling impulses and allowing a person to make logical decisions. When teens begin abusing substances, not only does this part of the brain make them want to repeat this action again to receive gratification, but it can also hinder the ability for this part of the brain to mature. The earlier that addiction is treated, the more likely it is for a teen to recover.
Because of the way these substances affect the brain, most addicts lack self-awareness and fail to realize how bad their problems actually are. This is why most addicts may be defensive when approached about a problem with drugs or alcohol. An addict’s brain makes him believe that the only way he can feel well is if he’s taking some sort of mind-altering substance. This can make the addict verbally or physically abusive when told that he needs to stop. By consulting a family intervention specialist, you’ll have a much better chance of convincing your teen to enter treatment.
Family intervention specialists are trained on how to deal with addicts when they feel as though they’re being backed into a wall. The specialist will meet with you along with friends and family members of your teenager prior to the intervention to learn about his history and how he may have become addicted. The specialist will then give insight as to how the intervention may go and prepare you for how your teen may react. When the intervention takes place, the specialist will act as a mediator to ensure that the primary purpose of the intervention stays in the forefront, and that’s to help your teen recover from the disease of addiction.
If you’d like more information about how family intervention specialists can help your teen enter treatment, please call our hotline today at 800-447-9081.