Teen Pitfalls Part 2 – Stress, Boredom, Extra Money


According to CASA Chairman and President and former U.S. Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare Joseph A. Califano, Jr “Two of the most common questions regarding teen drug use and addiction are: how can it happen to my child, and how can it happen to young boys or girls who seem to be typical teens?” said Califano. “These questions are often asked where the drug-abusing teen does not exhibit one of the usual warning signs of drug abuse – being physically or sexually abused, having a learning disability or eating disorder, suffering from serious depression or another mental health condition. The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University’s teen survey suggests that for many teens, the answers to these questions can be found in high stress, frequent boredom and too much spending money.”

Parental Pessimism

Parents are likelier than teens to view teen drug use as a fait accompli.  More than four out of 10 parents said teens are “very likely” or “somewhat likely” to try drugs, compared to only one of 10 teens.  Teens whose parents believe that future drug use is “very likely” are more than three times likelier to become substance abusers than teens whose parents say future drug use is “not likely at all.”

“Many parents think they have little power over their teens’ substance use and a disturbing number view drugs in schools as a fact of life they are powerless to stop,” noted Mr. Califano. “How parents act, how much pressure they put on school administrators to get drugs out of their teens’ schools, their attitudes about drugs, and how engaged they are in their children’s lives will have enormous influence over their teens’ substance use. Talbot Partnership agrees with Mr. Califano that “Parent Power is the most underutilized weapon in efforts to curb teen substance abuse.”

Five Ways Parents Can Reduce Teen Risk

  • Be sensitive to the stress in your children’s lives and help them cope.
  • Understand when and why your children are bored and help relieve their boredom.
  • Limit the amount of money your children have to spend and monitor how that money is spent.
  • Know who your children’s friends are.
  • Be engaged in your children’s lives: help them with their homework, attend their sports events, participate in activities together, and talk to them about drugs.

Source: CASA News Release Part 2

For further information on the dangers of alcohol and other drugs, contact Talbot Partnership at 410-819-8067. Please also visit our website at www.talbotpartnership.org or find us on Facebook.



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