Today, teens across the country struggle with substance abuse. While experimentation is a common part of teenagers’ lives, trying drugs and alcohol or social use can quickly turn to substance abuse and addiction. Unfortunately, teens often hide substance abuse and don’t ask family or loved ones for help when they need it. Understanding substance abuse and treatment can help parents support their teens throughout recovery.
Does your family need adolescent substance abuse treatment in North Carolina? Foothills at Red Oak Recovery can help. Our holistic clinic helps adolescent boys recover from substance abuse and co-occurring disorders. Call us now at 866.300.5275 to learn about our treatment programs and coping skills for teens.
What Is Substance Abuse?
Substance use is a broad term that refers to drug and alcohol consumption. Substance abuse is the use of drugs or alcohol interfering with daily life. The use of any illicit drug or prescription that does not belong to someone is considered substance abuse. When someone abuses drugs or alcohol, they continue to imbibe despite negative consequences. This might mean missing classes, getting sick from hangovers, or avoiding favorite activities because of drugs or alcohol. For teens living with mood disorders, substance abuse can lead to addiction and worsen the symptoms of conditions such as:
- Bipolar disorder
- Disordered eating
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
As a method of preventing a return to use, we have developed a list of coping skills for substance abuse recovery.
Coping Strategies for Teens Struggling with Substance Abuse
For teens, every day presents new challenges. It’s hard to cope with school, hormonal changes, and peer pressure. While many use substances like drugs or alcohol to self-soothe and disassociate, a substance abuse treatment program can provide holistic tools to manage stress and balance emotions. Some common coping strategies for teens include:
1. Journaling and Free-Writing
Free-writing practices get teens to put their thoughts, emotions, and feelings on paper. This can feel validating and allow them to let difficult emotions go.
2. Making Lists
Making a list helps teens put things into perspective and realize that they have more time and space to finish their work than expected.
Moving the body can increase endorphins and reduce stress. Today, teens are increasingly less active. Regular exercise can help them cope with stress and build resilience.
4. Attend Support Groups
Talking with other teens going through similar experiences can make teens feel less alone and make their problems seem more manageable.
5. Get Creative
Art, dance, and music therapy are all alternative approaches to managing emotions, changing behaviors, and processing childhood trauma. An artistic practice helps teens get out of their heads and gain perspective while also helping them find new creative outlets and hobbies.
6. Seek Talk Therapy
A therapist helps teens improve communication and advocate for themselves when they need more support at school or home.
7. Change Your Diet
Nutrition is essential for teens, especially those recovering from substance abuse. A balanced diet can help provide teens with the energy they need and reduce addiction triggers.
8. Meditation and Mindfulness
Anxiety and stress occur when we think about the past or the future. Meditation and present moment awareness help teens focus on the present moment rather than worry about the future.
9. Yoga and Martial Arts
Both yoga and martial arts help teens get out of their heads and into their bodies. Through breathing techniques, postures, and movements, teens channel their energy and lower stress through these mindful movement practices.
While reading isn’t on every teen’s list of favorite activities, diving into a good book or series helps teens manage stress in healthy ways.
Giving back to the community can help teens feel good about themselves and their abilities. Helping others also provides a sense of purpose.
Begin Holistic Substance Abuse Treatment in North Carolina at Foothills at Red Oak Recovery
If you’re looking for a list of coping skills for your teen, Foothills at Red Oak Recovery can help. Our holistic treatment programs combine equine-assisted and other experiential therapies with behavioral therapies to treat substance abuse and co-occurring disorders comprehensively. Teens at Foothills at Red Oak Recovery disconnect from their busy lives and reconnect with themselves and other teens their age. If you’re ready to learn more about coping skills the whole family can use, call us at 866.300.5275 to find the right treatment program for your son.