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07-10 Know why drug tests are important for teenagers

Know why drug tests are important for teenagers

Teenagers getting addicted to drugs is becoming increasingly common now. Easy access to illicit substances, coupled with the availability of ample information on the internet has fueled instances of substance misuse. Despite parents keeping a strict eye on the whereabouts of their wards and being more attentive to their upbringing, some teenagers may still experiment with drugs to get high, without their parent’s knowledge.

Though parents may find it tough to coerce their wards to go for a comprehensive drug-testing program, frequent testing of teenagers can go a long way in preventing them from becoming dependent on drugs. However, experts feel that the drug-testing programs must be conducted with the full knowledge and consent of the adolescent to ensure that they give detailed and accurate information. It enables both parents and medical professionals to know:

  • The nature of substances adolescents are actually taking;
  • The kind of risks teenagers may cause themselves including physical injuries;
  • The extent to which teenagers are vulnerable to addiction.

Reasons for drug tests

It is important to enable teenagers to understand as to why they must consent to such programs or to answer any queries or doubts they may have. For the same the parents must keep the following in mind or cite these reasons:

  • Even one-time use can lead to an addiction: Parties involving teenagers are fraught with habits like doing drugs or drinking alcohol. Extreme and constant peer pressure at times coerce adolescents to try out drugs, while being ignorant of the fact that their temptation to abuse drugs may result in prolonged dependence. The myth that drug abuse problems exist in the lower strata of the society and that education is an effective barrier against drug addiction needs to be tackled. Drug abuse is rampant and regular drug-test programs help in early diagnosis and timely treatment.
  • Incessant use of opioids is a precursor to drug addiction: Drug peddlers know how to target their customers and hence it is not much difficult for abusers to avail drugs or traffickers to make them easily accessible. Besides, teenagers may misuse opioid painkillers like hydrocodone, oxycodone or tramadol stored away in medicine cabinets. Incessant abuse of opioid medications may precede drug consumption that can result in addiction to other illicit substances.
  • There are healthy ways to face life’s difficulties: Teenagers look upon drugs as an easy and effective way to escape the grind or monotony of life, even if temporarily. This may lead to constant abuse of drugs, resulting in an addiction. In addition, body shaming issues, social isolation, depression, academic pressure or lack of familial relationships may coerce adolescents to misuse drugs.

Choose recovery over denial

According to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), by the 12th grade, about half of adolescents in the U.S. have abused an illicit drug at least once. In such a scenario, it is important for both adolescents and their guardians to understand that the culture to use drugs has become integral to student life. While the idea of getting tested may not go down well with teenagers, their tendency to avoid participating in such tests is a cue that something is wrong somewhere and hence parents need to be alert.

Drug abuse is a problem that a major percentage of Americans are struggling with and hence one must not feel ashamed on being tested positive for a substance. The idea is to seek immediate treatment to ensure adequate recovery. The Sovereign Health of Rancho San Diego provides comprehensive and holistic treatment for adolescents dealing with addiction problems. If you come across instances of teen drug abuse in your family, call our 24/7 helpline number or chat with one of our online representatives for expert advice. Addiction to various substances can derail one’s life. However, timely intervention at drug rehab centers for teens can prevent things from going out of hand. One must not shy away from treatment due to associated stigma and discrimination.

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