Boot Camp For Kids With Marijuana Addiction: Can They Help?
Is Marijuana a Problem
Though marijuana use is becoming legal in some places, it is still mind altering and illegal for those who are underage. In today’s environment, teen substance abuse is at an all time high in terms of concern. It is well documented that those that start using any illegal drug at an young age are more likely to become full blown addicts during their lifetime. Marijuana use among teens falls just slightly behind alcohol use.
Though marijuana is not as dangerous as some harder drugs it can lead to the use of drugs that are more severe on the system. Once someone starts to use anything mind altering it can easily blossom into a habit. There is also the problem of marijuana being laced with other intoxicants that can create problems. Though some people feel that experimenting is perfectly normal. Any use can alter brain chemistry which is especially problematic for those with developing brains. Luckily, if you have a teen that has a problem with marijuana, there are programs that can help. One such program will be described below.
Consequences of Substance Abuse
For those that think experimenting is okay for a time knowing some of the consequences of experimentation may be helpful. Daily marijuana consumption can change the shape of the hipokampus in the brain, leading to lowered IQ and impaired memory. Habitual use even increases the risk of things such as schizophrenia and psychosis.
In a population that is already prone to anxiety and depression, marijuana makes the disorders both worse and three to four times more likely. Additionally, aggression and violence among those who use marijuana regularly are up to seven times as likely to take part in violent, criminal acts. These statistics are both scary and sobering. If you have a teenager that is already engaging in this type behavior, now is the time to seek help.
What to Do
If you are just learning of your teens marijuana use or addiction, then stay calm. Overreacting will actually cause more damage and can lead to increased use. This is a progressive disease and even if your teen promises to never use again or that they are stopping. Don’t take their word for it. Stay positive and alert, but seek professional help. Stay educated on the disorder and on addiction in general. This will help you understand what is happening throughout the process.
Boot Camp for Teens
There is a program designed mainly for teenagers that includes getting out into nature to and into a highly structured environment that will help your teen physically and mentally. In the military type camp, your teen will take part in activities that help improve physical condition, while offering the counseling that is needed to get back on track with life.
Views on Boot Camp
There are two very polarized views on boot camp for substance abuse and teens. Some feel the structure and focus on physical health is helpful for those who are spinning out of control. However, others find that boot camps are too harsh and simply make teens more likely to become violent and act out. If you are choosing boot camp for your teen, read the research and make a decision based on what you learn. Help is available in many forms. DARA offers an in-patient facility if boot camp is not the direction you wish to take.
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