A Guide for Parents on Understanding Teen Behavior and Brain Development Concerning Drug Abuse:

opioid treatment doctors in New Bedford

From the early adolescent years to the late 20s, an individual’s brain develops unevenly, according to the opioid treatment doctors in New Bedford. The initial development happens in the sections of the brain that control physical activity (cerebellum), motivation (nucleus accumbens), and emotions (amygdala). The prefrontal cortex that is primarily responsible for rational thinking, good judgment, and impulse control develops later.

The suboxone clinic in New Bedford remark that the development of the prefrontal cortex (which is regarded as a ‘voice of reason’) in the last, helps in explaining the teenage behavior, including:

  • Difficulty in restraining one’s own emotions (holding back emotions)
  • Preference for exploration, excitement, and involvement in new activities
  • Limited judgment and inadequate planning
  • Unpredictable and risky behavior that triggers an adrenaline rush
  • Impulsive behavior

Unfortunately, the developing brain during the adolescent age is more susceptible to damage from external influences than an adult brain. It denotes that substance abuse during the teenage years causes immediate and long-lasting harm. Medications used for addiction recovery treatment like sublocade dosing may treat addiction but it also is harmful to health.

Possible reasons for teenagers to abuse substances and how parents can assist them

A range of challenging behavior, from rebellion to mood swings, is normal during the teenage years. Different experiences can trigger substance abuse among teenagers, according to the opioid treatment doctors near me. Understanding teenage substance abuse plays a vital role in preventing it and is considered an essential step towards keeping them safe and healthy.

Fitting in

Feelings of being considered an outsider, fear of being left out, and longing to be embraced and accepted by desired social groups are pronounced during the teenage years. Teenagers are often striving to fit into groups considered “cool,” says the center for opioid treatment in New Bedford. Indulging in substance abuse may come across as “cool,” and teens may feel the need to participate lest they won’t “fit in.” Some teenagers also view substances as key to making friends easily.

What parents can do:

  • Put an effort to know the friend circle of their kids and indulge in discussions about substance use with other parents
  • Give private space to their kids at home, encouraging the use of it for socializing
  • Assure the kids that they can turn to their parents for any help in times of distress
  • Engage in conversations about their need for social acceptance. Make them understand that real friends will accept them for who they are and give them space to grow.

Socializing

According to the suboxone clinic near me, some teenagers turn to substance abuse to cope with their insecurities. Substance abuse can give them the comfort required to let their guard down, enabling them to get better at interacting with others. It can be a threat because teenagers may feel that substance abuse is the key to feel socially confident.

What parents can do:

  • Find healthier alternatives to socializing by involving their kids in various activities like painting, dancing, sports, etc
  • Communicate their expectations and rules clearly when the kids go out with friends. Do regular check-ins but avoid being intrusive.

Life transitions

Periods of transitions in a teenager’s life like puberty, relationships/break ups, changing schools, ups and downs in friendships, death in the family, etc. can cause a mental disturbance, becoming a time of upheaval. The doctors providing sublocade near me warn that substance abuse during this time may become an escape to find solace.

What parents can do:

  • Effectively communicate with their kids during and after transitions. If the need arises, taking the kid for counseling/ therapy should not be delayed.
  • Engage in open dialogues with their kids about their experiences and emotions
  • Set aside some time for bonding with their kids and having fun together

Emotional and psychological pain

The everyday stress of life, including the school pressure and having problems in the family, can take an emotional toll on the teenagers. Low self-esteem, loneliness, mental health issues, including depression, anxiety disorder, etc. can trigger substance abuse, claims the opioid treatment near me. If any of these issues exist together, the compound effect increases emotional/psychological pain intensity, which leads to more and more substance abuse.

What parents can do:

  • Be empathetic and compassionate. Acknowledge their kids’ struggles and make an effort to understand them
  • Be open to guidance and assistance. Remind them that you don’t judge them for anything
  • Motivate them to inculcate healthy coping mechanisms like meditation, mindfulness, etc. in their routine
  • Guide them on healthier alternatives to manage stress

Other Resources:

Combating drug addiction: Refuse to give in to your cravings

Staying away from the common gateway drugs can help prevent addiction

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