Experimentation with drugs and alcohol is becoming more and more common by the day among teens and young adults. In fact, almost 50% of all teens try an illegal substance at least once by the time they reach their senior year of high school. While the number of teens and young adults using and abusing drugs and alcohol has increased, the number that has gone and sought treatment has not gone up. They will either try and self-treat or even just hide their issue for fear of punishment from their parents or guardians.
Thankfully, more and more treatment centers have opened their doors to teens and young adults. They have created treatment programs that are designed specifically for those between the ages of 16 and 30. Here, we’ll take a deeper look at substance abuse among teens as well as treatment at a rehab for young adults.
What Kinds of Substances Are Teens Most Likely To Abuse?
Just like in college students, experimentation with drugs and alcohol is continuing to rise in teens, especially during their senior year of high school. Nearly half of all high school seniors in the U.S. try an illicit substance at least once by the time they graduate. Drugs that are being most commonly used and abused by teens and young adults are:
The increase in teen drug use has resulted in treatment centers all over the country creating treatment programs specifically for young adults. At Harmony Ridge, we know that treatment is not one-size-fits-all. That’s why we have created a treatment program specifically for teens and young adults and their needs. Teen rehabs focus on young adult-specific issues and address them in a safe and welcoming environment.
Why Do Teens and Young Adults Turn To Drugs and Alcohol?
For most teens and young adults that start experimenting with drugs and alcohol, they don’t actually understand the ramifications of their actions. They don’t realize that they can easily get addicted to the substances they are trying. Since their bodies and brains are still developing, drugs and alcohol can affect teens significantly more than they can adults.
Additionally, they are at a vulnerable time in their life where they can be easily influenced by the actions of others. They might see someone else using illegal substances and think it “looks cool,” and that makes them want to try it, too. When they see someone else casually using, they think it looks harmless enough. They think they’ll be able to just try it once and nothing bad will happen to them.
However, what they don’t realize is that it can only take one hit for an addiction to develop. Over time, the brain stops producing certain chemicals and starts to depend on the substance to fulfill the void. While there are many reasons why a teen or young adult might experiment with drugs and alcohol, some reasons are more common than others.
The most common reasons for experimentation include:
- Stress relief: Between school and work, teenagers tend to feel frequent anxiety and stress. When things get bad enough, they might self-medicate by turning to drugs and alcohol for relief.
- Experimentation: When you are young and impressionable, you’re more likely to be influenced by the actions of others. That includes the experimentation of drugs and alcohol. Many teens feel invincible as well and think nothing bad can happen to them. This combination results in the use of illegal substances.
- Performance enhancement: Many teens and young adults have this obsession with wanting to be the best at what they do. This can be academically, athletically, or even professionally. Certain drugs can allow that to happen, and many young adults will turn to these and obtain them by any means necessary to achieve their goals.
- Chasing euphoria: Many drugs provide a euphoric feeling that people who take them continue to try and chase. After a while, as your body grows dependent on the substance and the feeling, you will need to take more and more to achieve the euphoria that you have set out to get.
Unfortunately, many teens and young adults turn to drug and alcohol experimentation to address issues going on in their lives. Instead of going to their parents or someone else they trust, they “self-medicate” to address their issues. This might be out of embarrassment or because they don’t have someone that they feel comfortable turning to.
At Harmony Ridge, we understand what teens and young adults are going through. That’s why we offer treatment programs specifically designed for those under the age of 30.
What Are The Treatment Options For Teens and Young Adults?
When it comes to rehab for young adults suffering from addiction, there are many different options out there. Generally, the type of drug and length of use, play a role in determining the best kind of treatment. The most common type of treatment for teens and young adults is inpatient treatment, where the person will live at the treatment facility for the duration of their treatment.
Before starting treatment, you will have to go through detox. During detox, you will rid your body of all harmful substances so that you can begin treatment. It is crucial to undergo detox under trained medical supervision either at a medical facility, a designated detox facility, or at a treatment facility that offers detox services like Harmony Ridge. Attempting to self-detox can be incredibly dangerous or even life-threatening.
The following are treatment options specifically designed for teens and young adults:
30-, 60-, and 90-Day Programs
Some of the most common types of inpatient rehab for young adults are 30-, 60-, and 90-day programs. Depending on the severity of the addiction and the evaluation that you undergo upon entering treatment, professionals will recommend that you enter treatment for either 30, 60, or 90 days. The more serious the addiction, the longer the stay in treatment. During treatment, you will participate in a variety of therapies including individual and group therapy.
Sober Living Homes
After the completion of 30-, 60-, or 90-day treatment, many teens and young adults will go to a sober living home to continue their aftercare treatment. Sober living homes are a great way to slowly re-enter society while also providing a safe place to maintain sobriety. Also known as halfway houses, sober living homes help you slowly get used to getting back to your regular routine at whatever pace you want.
They also provide support since you are living with other people who are in the same situation as you and have gone through the same things. While not as strict as inpatient facilities, sober living homes have requirements like curfews and mandatory group meetings.
Even after you have finished treatment and your time in the sober living home, continuing to have a support system is crucial in your life-long journey of remaining clean and sober. Finding support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, or other 12-step programs are a great way to get the support you need in a safe and welcoming environment.
When you attend a support group meeting, you are going to a place where everyone is there for the same reason. They are all there because they suffer from addiction and are looking to talk about their problems with others who have gone through similar things. Some groups are geared toward specific genders and addictions, such as teens and young adults, while others may provide general meetings for anyone to attend.
Why Should I Go To A Rehab For Young Adults?
An inpatient rehab tailored to the needs of young adults has many advantages. These facilities tend to address the physical, emotional, and behavioral issues that young adults often face better than other facilities because the specialists are specifically trained to handle teens and young adults.
Sending a teen or a young adult to a treatment center that specializes in treating people their age has many advantages. Some of those advantages include:
- Specialized counseling
- Being able to connect with sober peers
- Different types of therapy
- Social skill development
Young adults think and act differently from adults. They tend to be treated differently from adults in society, so why shouldn’t they be treated differently when it comes to addiction treatment?
Are You Looking For a Drug and Alcohol Rehab For Young Adults?
As mentioned earlier, treatment is not a one-size-fits-all approach. Different people need different things to successfully undergo treatment, including teens and young adults. At Harmony Ridge, we understand this, which is why we offer treatment programs specifically designed for teens and young adults. If you or someone you know is a teen or young adult that is in need of substance abuse treatment, contact us today.