Juveniles and Drugs

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What are the Patterns Relative to Juvenies and Drug Use?

Juveniles and Drugs

There are several relevant risk factors that can determine the possibility of drug use/abuse for juveniles:

  • genetic predisposition
  • stressful environment
  • peer pressure
  • mental illness and desire to self-medicate
It should be noted that the earlier the onset of drug use/abuse, the more likely that the user will develop increased drug problems over his/her life. This pattern of use becomes not only a part of the juvenile's formative physiological and chemical make-up, but also an early integrated, albeit defective, coping strategy.

While reports of drug use/abuse regarding juveniles show a recent decline in overall use, the concern with juvenile use patterns (and related behavioral and societal difficulties) is being addressed on a national level. A 2006 Monitoring the Future study reported that 36.5 % of 12th graders reported use within the last year. 21.5% of that same group reported use over the past month. Other research reports that engagement in relational, youth activities appears to decrease the overall tendency of use/abuse patterns among juveniles.

   

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