parents and son talking in the garden during the family programWhen working with teens and young adults to overcome addiction, a family program is vital. Overall, substance abuse problems quickly turn into deeply rooted issues that affect the entire family. Those closest to an individual with addiction need help as well. Most importantly, they need to learn how to support their loved one throughout recovery.

Causes of Addiction

One thing that it is critical to understand when you’re thinking about attending a family program is why many teens and young adults begin using drugs. There are several reasons why teens may start using drugs and alcohol, including:

  • They want to fit in: If a teen or young adult is friends with a group of people who use drugs, they may begin to use drugs to fit in with those people.
  • They want to feel better: If your teen struggles with mental health issues such as depression or anxiety, they may start using drugs or alcohol to numb themselves. If this is the case, a dual diagnosis treatment program may be a useful addition to your teen or young adult’s treatment
  • They enjoy the euphoric feeling: Some drugs can cause addiction after one use. The teen enjoys the euphoria it creates while it changes the structure of the brain. They feel like they must keep using the drug.
  • They want to experiment with new things: Some people begin a new hobby, like skateboarding or playing an instrument. Others try drugs and alcohol. However, this hobby, while it may feel risky or daring, is exceedingly dangerous to their health
  • They feel like they need to excel: Certain drugs can help students stay awake for more extended periods so that they can study longer or harder. However, at the same time, these drugs can diminish their academic ability.

Whatever the reason that your teen or young adult started using drugs, it’s essential to be understanding towards them. A family program will most likely not be successful if the people in it are at odds with each other.

The Benefits of a Family Program

It’s very common for teens and young adults with drug abuse problems to withdraw socially. By not wanting to cope with the sadness, stress, and emotions their family members experience as a result of their behavior, they isolate themselves further. They may feel guilt and shame for this growing distance, as well. At the same time, family support is absolutely necessary to overcoming addiction.

An effective family program helps potential patients navigate these treacherous waters. It’s fair to say this treatment setting helps the entire family recover. Often, it’s completely different from what participants initially expect. Therapists use modalities that support personal growth, including:

  • Talk therapy helps family members recognize their healing needs
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy approaches allow participants to identify negative patterns in behaviors, thoughts, and feelings.
  • Role-playing provides the context for developing boundaries and encouraging effective communication.

For many program participants, this is often the first family therapy setting they’ve been in, so understanding what to expect is essential.

What To Expect From an Addiction Treatment Family Program

Those closest to someone abusing substances fear accusations and recrimination. Specifically, teens or young adults worry about loved ones showing disappointment. Almost everyone enters these sessions with apprehensions. However, this therapeutic option is not about finger-pointing.

Instead, therapists are present to mediate the discussion. The goal is to move forward and help everyone create a desirable family dynamic. During conversations, therapists try to help participants understand one another and accept different opinions. There’s no better time than now to address dysfunction and heal old wounds.

It’s also an excellent time to teach family members about addiction. By understanding it’s a disease instead of moral failure, discussions change to the positive. The disease model of dependency shifts the understanding from one of personal failure to healing and recovery. Strengthening the familial bond and enrolling in the right substance abuse programs are powerful tools for preventing future relapse.

In fact, education always helps parents understand their roles. It reassures them they didn’t cause the drug problem and help recognize they can’t cure it. That said, addiction education opens the door to family involvement. By shifting the focus away from blame, therapists provide a satisfactory resolution.

Both counselors are very dedicated to helping the entire family deal with a very complex issue. They have a solid methodology, provide information and a game plan to try to stop drug use before it becomes a dependancy problem. The guidance they provide can prevent the need for full outpatient treatment, if you follow their guidelines. Even if you don’t need treatment, I highly recommend you and your at-risk loved one go for counseling. An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure!

– Gina F. 

Other Essential Aspects of Treatment

A family program is not the only essential part of an addiction treatment program. For instance, during your teen or young adult’s treatment, they will also take part in a variety of therapies. At Zelus Recovery, we use many evidence-based therapeutic methods to ensure that your teen or young adult’s treatment is successful. Evidence-based therapies are therapies that addiction treatment specialists have studied extensively. Over a period of several years, these experts have determined that these treatments can effectively treat addiction.

Our therapeutic methods include:

Another aspect of an effective addiction treatment program may be dual diagnosis treatment. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, in 2018, over 3.2 million adults struggle with both an addiction and a severe mental illness.

For people who are battling both disorders, dual diagnosis treatment is critical.

During dual diagnosis treatment, our addiction treatment specialists work with your teen or young adult to understand the root cause of their addiction. They will also help them to develop coping mechanisms that can effectively keep them from relapsing back into addiction or mental illness.

At Zelus Recovery, we offer treatment for a wide range of mental illnesses, including:

Mental illness is another disease that touches the entire family, and it is critical to get the support your teen or young adult needs from their loved ones. As a result, a dual diagnosis treatment may be part of your family program. Contact Zelus Recovery to find out more about our treatment plans.

Getting Help for Teens and Young Adults with Drug Problems

If you or a loved one struggles with substance abuse, addiction therapies like family programs can help. Don’t wait until the problem gets worse. It won’t go away by itself. Contact the caring therapists at Zelus Recovery in Meridian, Idaho, today. Dial 208.518.0797 now to schedule an intake assessment.