Saving America’s Youth From the Perils of Drug Addiction

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In an age where America’s youth are severely impacted by drug addiction, understanding risk factors and identifying triggers is an important key to prevention. From mental health issues that have flown under the radar to childhood trauma that hasn’t been unearthed–uncovering hidden triggers can help prevent addiction and support providers who are administering treatment.

Listening to the youth and incorporating their ideas into treatment plans is also imperative in responding to the drug crisis. Not only are young adults capable of speaking up for what they need–when they play a part in their healing they are more likely to follow through. Using peer-led support groups, including time in nature, using music and art in a treatment setting are great ideas for addiction recovery in young populations.

Finally, providers may explore on-line platforms such as podcasts and interactive groups on social media to help young audiences access information on addiction recovery. Risk factors related to gender expression, sexual orientation, racism and classism are also must be considered when creating effective plans for youth.

Dr. Lesleigh Franklin is a leading clinician and youth advocate.