2. Content of Discussion:
Youth Brain & Addiction.
Why is the youth becoming addicted?
Home Life & Environment
Is there a Genetic Role?
Advertisement & Media Influence
Celebrities & Substance Abuse
Drug addiction is a problem for teenagers as
well as adults due to a variety of reasons.
Peer pressure, growing up in a household
where one or both parents take drugs or
having a genetic tendency towards addiction.
Films, television and the media are additional
4. Introduction: cont..
Drug induced death now outnumbers suicide,
injury by fire arms, and homicide
Emergency room visits from prescription
from overdoses doubled from 2005-2012
Overdose deaths from painkillers have risen
from less than 2, 901 in 1999 to 11, 499 in
By 2007, more teenagers used opioid
analgesics recreationally than used marijuana
(Center for Disease Control)
5. Substance Abuse can lead to:
Problems at school
Cause or aggravate physical and mental
health related issues
Promote poor peer relationships
Place stress on the family
6. Youth Brain & Addiction:
Issue: the youth is more prone to drug
addiction due to their brains is still
developing. (decision-making development)
The desire for pleasure (buzz) overrides the
consideration of harm and effect on others
Ex: Parents and other members of their family or
8. Most Highly Abused Substance
amongst Youth in the U.S.:
Youth engage in binge drinking
A pattern of drinking that elevates the blood
alcohol concentration to 0.08 percent or above,
more than adults do. (www.findyouthinfo.gov)
This can lead to risky and potentially harmful
behaviors mixed with additional substance abuse.
9. Why is the youth becoming
Young people are attracted to:
Most common reason is Peer Pressure
10. Why is the youth becoming
Young people are obsessed with being part of the
group and trying to “fit in”.
Ex:Wearing the same clothes, speaking the same
language and doing the same things.
If the group they wish to be part of does drugs then
it is very difficult not to do the same.
11. Why is the youth becoming
Another reason is due to being part of a
“dare” or trying to show their maturity.
The teenage years is a difficult time in that a
young person is no longer a child but is not
quite an adult and is trying t assert their
individualism and identity at the time.
12. Why is the youth becoming
Friendships and being part of a group are
immensely important at this time.
A young person would rather adapt their
behavior to that of the group rather than risk
13. Why is the youth becoming
Additionally, smoking, drinking alcohol or
taking drugs are seen as acts of rebellion.
Young people know that these potentially
harmful substances are bad for them which
make them even more attractive.
The thought of doing something that is both
risky and frowned upon by adults only adds to
14. Why is the youth becoming
Young people don’t believe that it will lead to
an addiction or even damage their health in
the long run.
Youth thinks: “One is immortal while young”
Realistic:Taking an illicit substance when
young can result in an addiction that will stay
with them into adulthood.
15. Home Life & Environment:
If a young person is brought up in a
household where drugs are discussed freely,
are available or are seen as part of everyday
life then they re at risk of developing an
If a young person is in a home where
cigarettes, alcohol or drugs are not viewed as
anything out of the ordinary, then it is logical
that they will see them in the same way.
16. Home Life & Environment:
This is not to say that every young person
who grows up in a substance abuse
environment will become a drug addict.
However, there is a greater risk of this
happening than for someone from a stable
Drug addiction is no respecter of social
class, background, income level, location
17. Is there a Genetic Role?:
There have been studies undertaken into
whether a person can have inherited a gene
There may not be an actual gene but there
are aspects of a person’s genetic makeup
which make them more vulnerable to drug
18. Is there a Genetic Role?:
People do assume that if several members of
a family have an addiction, such as drugs then
they have inherited a gene for this addiction
which will be passed down to their children.
This is INCORRECT!!!
It’s a combination of factors: exposure to
addictive behavior, environment, lifestyle and
19. Is there a Genetic Role?:
Ex: if a young person is poor, lives in a deprived
area, are friendly with people who smoke, drink
or use drugs and is psychologically vulnerable,
this can increase the chance of addiction.
Needless to say, it may not be due to any
genetic tendencies but more a case of
socialization in that the young person has grown
up with smoking, drinking or drug use in their
family as acceptable behavior.
20. Advertisement & Media Influence:
Young people are very susceptible to the
power of advertising and a target consumer
group by various companies who understand
the attraction to this age group.
Both film and television present lifestyles
which often include these substances in a
21. Advertisement & Media Influence:
Fashion and music magazines and the
internet focus on celebrities lifestyles which
also include substance abuse.
Very impressionable to the youth.
Many young people aspire to the celebrity
Drinking, Smoking and/or Hard Drugs
22. Celebrities & Substance Abuse:
Numerous celebrities of the past half century
have been plagued with substance abuse
problems that resulted disastrous.
The common denominator in celebrity deaths
is Substance Abuse.
Depression, Insomnia, Personality Changes,
Impaired Judgment & Poor Relationships
23. Celebrities & Substance Abuse:
Ozzy Osborne- led to
him being fired from
Snoop Dog- busted a
few times for marijuana
AmyWinehouse- died of
an alcohol addiction
Britney Spears- relapsed
and shaved her head
Marilyn Monroe- died
from an overdose
Whitney Houston- died
result from addiction
Michael Jackson- died
from prescription drugs
Elvis Presley- died,
autopsy revealed 14
drugs found in system.
Prevention: talking to young people about
the risks of drug addiction is important as this
will hopefully prevent addiction happening.
Involve students in prevention/education efforts
Engage Parents more effectively
Encourage substance-free events
Provide helpful resource material
Treatment: if beyond the prevention, it is a
case of treating the addiction and providing
help along with support throughout the
Treatment for an addiction is a long and time
consuming process that can be difficult for
both the addict and people around them.