Do you suspect your teenager might be using and abusing drugs or alcohol? With teen drug and alcohol use on the rise, many parents are dealing with teens who suffer from substance abuse. While most parents of teens deal with some level of defiant behavior, drugs and alcohol add a whole other layer to make matters worse. If you feel your kid is engaged in teen drug use and/or teen alcohol use, you should seek the help of a professional experienced in working with teenagers and consider a residential treatment center (RTC).

Teen Alcohol or Drug Abuse

There are common warning signs like personality changes, mood and behavior changes, new friends or withdrawal from friends, odd sleeping habits, academic performance suffering and often a lack of interest in things he enjoyed doing before.

If Your Teenager is Wasted Today, What Will Become of Him Tomorrow? 

Teen alcohol abuse

As a parent you should know that almost 50% of all tenth graders in the US drink alcohol1 and alcohol is responsible for over 4300 deaths per year.2  Statistically drug and alcohol abuse to go hand in hand.  If you suspect your teenage son has a problem with drugs or alcohol then he most likely does. We urge you not to wait in seeking help.


Here are some tips recommended for the parents of teenagers with tendencies to live life on the wild side.

1. Have the Talk 
Avoiding teen drug use or teen alcohol use is probably the worst thing you can do. Instead of
acting like you don’t know what’s happening, confront the situation head on. Let him/her know
you are aware of the teen drug use and/or teen alcohol use.

2. Discuss Dangers
Teens aren’t usually knowledgeable when it comes to the dangers of teen drug use and teen
alcohol use. Since a teenager’s brain and body are still developing, drug or alcohol use can have a serious long term affect.

3. Seek Outside Help
If all else fails, it’s best to leave things up to the pros. Feel you’ve done everything you can? It
may be time to enroll him/her at a teen residential treatment center.   Teen drug use and teen alcohol abuse are unfortunately all too common. However, with the proper support, you and your drugged up or alcoholic teen can find a path to happy, healthy living. There’s no need to go at it alone. Drug and alcohol counselors could very well be your most valuable assets.

If after talking with your child, the behavior does not improve, then it is imperative that you move forward with an intervention.  Speak to an intervention specialist and be prepared with a strategy.  There are many options including rehabilitation programs and Twelve Step Programs in your neighborhood.  We highly recommend that you consider all the options available to you: inpatient treatment, residential programs, day treatment, outpatient and of course residential treatment ctr.  The higher success ratios are usually with immersive programs because they typically recognize and deal with your child’s deeper issues.  If the root cause is not addressed and corrected you are likely to find yourself in an emotional roller-coaster.

Many of the boys we help at our school / program, have been through multiple interventions, counseling and other rehabilitation programs with little success before coming to Wood Creek Academy.

Choosing a Residential Treatment Center?

Choose a program that specializes in dealing with teenagers, with an experienced and educated team regarding teen defiance and substance abuse. Licensed Addiction Counselors (LAC) are best equipped to help a teenager with a substance abuse problem, they have experience working with situations where drugs or alcohol have become an issue.

Residential programs provide a living environment with treatment services. Treatment in lasts from a month to a year or more and have phases of treatment, with different expectations and activities during each phase. While in a program teens can have contact with immediate family but not with their friends, this helps them focus on the treatment and better adjust. While undergoing treatment your child can continue his academic education and learn new life skills to help build self-esteem and personal growth.

Learn More:
Teen Alcohol Abuse
Teen Drug Use

Underage Drinking Infographic

Teen Substance Abuse


Sources: (1)Mothers Against Drunk Drivers,(2)Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Image: Center for Addiction