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A group of teens wraps a joint.

01 Jul Addiction Follows Teens to Adulthood

As a parent, there are few things that are more stressful than the idea that our kids are on a troubling path, and are making destructive decisions that we cannot stop them from. When these fears manifest in today’s society, it is usually in the form of substance abuse. While it’s understandable that you don’t want to be an overbearing helicopter parent (that would probably have an adverse effect, anyways), you should also make sure to know what your child is up to and what they are doing.

Addiction has a terrifying knack of following young people into adulthood in a variety of ways, and it’s important to challenge substance abuse early. Here’s some information about the conundrum of young people and addiction…

Substance abuse on colleges

One particular way that addiction continues to grow beyond teenage years is in the college scene. In many high-achieving schools across the country, there is a prevalent attitude of “work hard, play hard.” It’s no secret that the rate of alcohol abuse is considerably higher on college campuses, where binge-drinking culture thrives. What is especially troubling about substance abuse on college campuses is that it isn’t always done recreationally, but in pursuit of better academic performance. Today, study drugs, which are stimulants that students take to have the energy to focus and study for longer periods of time, are exceedingly popular.

Suburban vs urban teens

Interestingly, the demographic of teenagers that is at the highest risk of experimenting with substance abuse is the upper echelons of the middle class, particular in the suburbs, as opposed to cities. This actually makes a lot of sense. Typically, kids from lower incomes in urban environments have a lot more at risk from substance abuse, since their parents don’t have the disposable income to bail them out of problems.

On top of that, kids from low income families tend to need to work more, in order to help provide for their families. The resources and spare time that build up in middle class households are an equation for the experimentation that is so often accompanied by the curiosity of being young.

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