There is no doubt whatsoever that drug and alcohol addiction is a steadily worsening problem in this country. This is an issue that has gotten exponentially worse since the turn of the century, and it has presented itself as a problem of serious and very real concern, to say the least. Now more so than perhaps ever before, if something is not done about it then the issue will only get worse and worse as the years go by.
Drug and alcohol addiction is particularly harmful and serious amongst American teens right now. Without a doubt, this is the demographic that is most commonly affected and afflicted with drug and alcohol addiction problems. These are serious issues and crisis problems, to say the least, and they only get worse as the years go by, never better.
Teens are now the number one at risk demographic in the United States because of the simple fact that the teen drug abuse problem has gotten so severe and real. They need a solution, and they need it quickly too.
The Facts and Statistics on the Problem
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Monitoring the Future Survey all studied and examined this country’s drug problem and came out with the understanding that this most definitely is a problem that will need to be taken care of immediately. For some more data about it:
- Young men and women in the United States are sadly falling prey to substance abuse and drug and alcohol addiction in numbers never before seen.
- Studies now show to us that about 20% of young adults will have tried an illegal drug by the age of 18 and about a good 50% of them will have gotten drunk by age of 18.
- This easily sets the stage for a massive addiction for these individuals in their early 20s and mid-20s.
- Because of the mental development that is still occurring in the late teens themselves, trying drugs or abusing alcohol at this age, even if done just once, increases the probability of becoming addicted to those substances by about three or four times as compared to older adults trying these substances for the first time would.
- Roughly no less than a good thirteen percent of teens report that they have taken prescription stimulants at some point, such as Ritalin or Adderall, that were not prescribed for them, at least once in their lifetime to date.
- Nine percent of teens in the United States (about 1.9 million teens all in all) report having misused or abused benzodiazepine in the past year alone (up from 6 percent in 2008) and 6 percent of teens (1.3 million of them to be exact) report abuse of benzodiazepine in the past month (up from 4 percent in 2008). Obviously, teen prescription drug abuse is on the rise and in a big way too, big enough to capture national attention.
Doing Something About the Teen Drug Culture
There are three ways to address the teen drug culture in this country that all must be done to make sure the problem gets taken down.
- Educate. Teens absolutely must be educated about drugs and about the dangers and risks that go along with drugs.
- Prevent. More work needs to be done to try to stop drugs from even coming into neighborhoods in the first place.
- Rehabilitate. For those teens who sadly do get addicted to drugs and alcohol, then these persons need to be able to go through an addiction treatment center.
These are the tools and the techniques that need to be used to really address and get through drug and alcohol addiction once and for all and for good. With these methods and these approaches, success can be had in the long run.