The Opioid Crisis and Approaches For Young People

By Published On: June 22nd, 2017Categories: Opiates, Teen and Young Adult Substance Abuse

Over the past several years a great deal has been reported about the opioid crisis in America. It seems everyday there is a story about a young person who possesses boundless potential succumbing to an overdose. Far too many people have fallen victim to this epidemic and many are searching for the best way to approach this deadly problem. Certainly the efforts to bolster prevention, improve treatment, and harm reduction methodology are worthwhile. Addiction impacts individuals, families, and society as a whole. In order to effectively tackle the crisis all areas must be addressed. However, one approach does not work for all facets. Some factors to consider:

  • Adults are different than adolescents
  • The role of a spouse of an addict is not the same as the role of the parent
  • Social change is not created by good treatment
  • Regarding young people, opioid abuse usually begins with alcohol and/or marijuana experimentation

Placing all addiction issues under the “opioid crisis” umbrella doesn’t repair anything. Understanding the addict, creating environmental change, and helping people find better coping mechanisms lays a foundation for transformation.

Why Do They Get High?

It is vital to remember that young people get high because they love how it feels. By the time a young person’s use progresses to the point of abusing heroin or other opioids drug education is irrelevant. Although education is a useful prevention tool and can be beneficial through treatment, an addict who is using does not care to hear about the potential destruction that can happen as the result of prolonged substance abuse.

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About the Author

Clint Stonebraker has worked in the substance abuse treatment field since 1987 and has been the owner of The Insight Program since 1993. Clint Stonebraker has overseen the expansion of Insight into Greensboro, Charlotte, and Raleigh North Carolina as well as growth in the Atlanta area. Clint is committed to providing quality care to individuals and families affected by substance abuse.