New substance abuse treatment resources focus on teens

January 23, 2014, NIH/National Institute on Drug Abuse

Resources to help parents, health care providers, and substance abuse treatment specialists treat teens struggling with drug abuse, as well as identify and interact with those who might be at risk, were released today by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). The release came before the start of National Drug Facts Week, an annual observance to educate teens about drug abuse. NIDA is part of the National Institutes of Health.

Adolescents' drug use, as well as their treatment needs, differ from those of adults. Teens abuse different substances, experience different consequences, and are less likely to seek treatment on their own because they may not want or think they need help. Parents can work with to find appropriate treatment, but they may be unaware that the teen is using drugs and needs help. According to the 2012 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, only 10 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds needing substance abuse treatments receive any services.

"Because critical brain circuits are still developing during the teen years, this age group is particularly susceptible to drug abuse and addiction," said NIDA Director Dr. Nora D. Volkow. "These new resources are based on recent research that has greatly advanced our understanding of the unique treatment needs of the adolescent."

A new online publication, Principles of Adolescent Substance Use Disorder Treatment: A Research Based Guide, describes the treatment approaches. Highlights include:

  • Thirteen principles to consider in treating adolescent substance use disorders
  • Frequently asked questions about adolescent drug use
  • Settings in which adolescent treatment most often occurs
  • Evidence-based approaches to treating adolescent substance use disorders
  • The role of the family and medical professionals in identifying teen substance use and supporting treatment and recovery.

To increase early screening of adolescent , the "Substance Use Disorders in Adolescents: Screening and Engagement in Primary Care Settings" educational module was created. The online curriculum resource for medical students and resident physicians provides videos demonstrating skills to use in screening adolescents at risk for or already struggling with substance use disorders. Both the patient and physician perspectives are highlighted. Although created as a training tool, the resource is also free to anyone in the public seeking information on how to interact with teens at risk for addiction. The resource was developed by the NIDA Centers of Excellence for Physician Information, in collaboration with Drexel University College of Medicine and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, both in Philadelphia.

Explore further: Stimulant-addicted patients can quit smoking without hindering treatment

More information: NIDA has many other resources that will be promoted during National Drug Facts Week, Jan. 27-Feb. 2, 2014. For more information on this observance, go to: drugfactsweek.drugabuse.gov/

Related Stories

Stimulant-addicted patients can quit smoking without hindering treatment

December 11, 2013
Smokers who are addicted to cocaine or methamphetamine can quit smoking while being treated for their stimulant addiction, without interfering with stimulant addiction treatment. This is according to new research funded by ...

Predictors of substance abuse identified among teens with bipolar disorder

October 2, 2013
A study published in the October 2013 issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry found that approximately one in three teens with bipolar disorder developed substance abuse, for the first ...

Why do doctors abuse prescription drugs? 'Self-medication' is key reason

October 4, 2013
Doctors who abuse prescription drugs often do so for "self-medication"—whether for physical or emotional pain or stress relief, reports a study in the October Journal of Addiction Medicine, the official journal of the American ...

Study supports need for more control over prescribed drugs for youths

November 7, 2013
(Medical Xpress)—Teens who are prescribed pain relievers, such as Vicodin and OxyContin, are at "notable risk" for abusing opioid drugs, says a University of Michigan researcher.

New warm line helps clinicians tackle patients' substance abuse

April 8, 2011
A free, nationwide service was launched today to help primary care providers seeking to identify and advise substance-abusing patients. The service, Physician Clinical Support System for Primary Care (PCSS-P), offers peer-to-peer ...

People, places and adolescent substance use: Multiple dimensions of drug use

November 6, 2013
Addiction is not just biological – there is a social dimension to understand. And how a teenager's friends, favorite hangouts and feelings and moods all interact to influence substance use can say a lot.

Recommended for you

Gaming or gambling? Online transactions blur boundaries

June 28, 2018
In-game purchasing systems, such as 'loot boxes', in popular online games resemble gambling and may pose financial risks for vulnerable players, according to gambling psychology researchers at the University of Adelaide.

Exercise helps treat addiction by altering brain's dopamine system

May 28, 2018
New research by the University at Buffalo Research Institute on Addictions has identified a key mechanism in how aerobic exercise can help impact the brain in ways that may support treatment—and even prevention strategies—for ...

Warning labels on alcohol containers highly deficient, new research shows

May 21, 2018
Current health warning labels on alcohol beverage containers in New Zealand are highly deficient, new research from the University of Otago, Wellington shows.

Serving smaller alcoholic drinks could reduce the U.K.'s alcohol consumption

May 14, 2018
New research published in Addiction, conducted by researchers from the Universities of Liverpool and Sheffield, highlights the potential benefits of reducing the standard serving size of alcoholic beverages.

Anti-alcoholism drug shows promise in animal models

May 3, 2018
Scientists at The University of Texas at Austin have successfully tested in animals a drug that, they say, may one day help block the withdrawal symptoms and cravings that incessantly coax people with alcoholism to drink. ...

FDA-approved drugs to treat diabetes and obesity may reduce cocaine relapse and help addicted people break the habit

April 28, 2018
Cocaine and other drugs of abuse hijack the natural reward circuits in the brain. In part, that's why it's so hard to quit using these substances. Moreover, relapse rates hover between 40 and 60 percent, similar to rates ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.