If you suspect that your child is using drugs, then it essential to find high-quality drug addiction treatment that meets the needs of teenagers. Teenagers require a different type of substance abuse treatment than adults in order to avoid complications from dangerous withdrawal symptoms. Your child also needs to have one-on-one and group counseling on a daily basis that has a different approach than the way adult substance abusers are counseled.
Programs for Different Age Groups
In California, parents can find a drug addiction program that focuses on the needs of adolescents who range in age from 13 to 17. Parents will want to find a specialty program that meets the emotional and intellectual needs of a younger teenager rather than placing a child in the same group as an older adolescent. In addition, teenagers who have used drugs have frequently stunted their brain development, making understanding the process of addiction treatment difficult.
The Effects of Withdrawal
Before entering an outpatient or residential drug treatment program, your teenage child requires a detoxification process. For adults this process lasts from three to seven days, but extra care is necessary for teens because their body and brain are still developing. An adolescent will experience unpleasant withdrawal symptoms from substances such as cocaine or methamphetamines. Some of the effects of withdrawal are:
• Nausea and vomiting
• Excessive perspiration
• Severe shaking
• Delirium and hallucinations
These symptoms are frightening for an adolescent who has little life experience and an inability to understand what is happening to their mind and body.
Providing Counseling for Families
Many parents are often unable to cope with seeing their child suffer during this process, and this means that drug addiction counselors must also assist families who are traumatized by substance abuse. When a teenager is going through the substance abuse rehabilitation treatment, they may rebel by running away from a facility or their home to seek drugs in dangerous neighborhoods. An effective drug abuse program must make the experience of counseling interesting at a teenager’s level of understanding.