Opioids are drugs that suppress the pain receptors like narcotics, heroin, etc., and have become dangerously worse all over the world over the past few years.
Not only are the addiction rates alarming but also the fatalities from synthetic opioids are increasing!
Unfortunately, teenagers make up 70% of opioid users and the numbers are only growing. It can be frightening to see your kids using drugs.
Also, most of the time parents don’t deal with the situation in the most effective ways possible and only end up making it worse.
Teenagers have a really sensitive mind that can be triggered easily especially if they are on drugs, they will end up getting angry and things will go out of hand. So the matter at hand needs to be dealt with patiently and delicately.
This is how you can deal with your teenage kid if you suspect they are using opioids:
1. Prepare For Confrontation
The most important thing is patience. As a parent, it is easy to lose your calm when you’re worried about the safety and health of your kid but it is not helping the situation in any way.
What you have to do is to prepare for the situation first. Think about what to talk to about, all the possible ways the conversation can go off the rails.
Ask your kids why did they feel the need to start taking opioids, was it bad company? Or was something bothering them that they couldn’t share with you?
There are a lot of reasons your child could be doing opioids like:
- To deal with anxiety
- Being peer pressured by friends
During adolescence, the brain is going through changes and substance use can damage the development of the brain and cause problems later on.
You have to understand the situation carefully and prepare for ‘the talk’. Be polite and try to find out the reason behind your teenager’s drug abuse first.
Staying calm and maintaining composure throughout the conversation is the key!
2. Talk to Experts
Once it has been established that your teenager is in fact addicted to opioids, it is time to address the problem.
Besides talking to your kid about the situation, talk to experts like doctors and psychiatrists about the extent of your kid’s addiction and how can it be contained? Will they need rehabilitation, counseling or medication?
Suboxone addiction treatment is one of the most popular treatments used for opioids and completely safe for teenagers!
Experts will guide you towards the best way to deal with the situation. But the most important role will be yours and how you deal with the whole scenario.
In most cases, rehabilitation will be suggested and constant counseling needs to be maintained long term to make sure it does not happen again!
3. Choose the Right Rehab
Now there are rehab centers for both adults and teens and have proven exponentially helpful in treating the addiction problems in teenagers.
Just like for adults, teens can go to either inpatient rehab or outpatient rehab. Here is how they are both different and beneficial:
Inpatient Rehab For Teens
Inpatient rehab is a great choice for teenagers. Because there will be full-time care provided to your kid and they will be given aid in detox and constant therapy.
Staying in a restricted environment for a while might be good for them.
They have 24-hours medical assistance and they will stay away from bad company or any triggers that got them addicted in the first place. This will also teach them patience and maintaining order.
But it is understandable why it can be hard for parents to send their kids to a place where they aren’t under their supervision, especially after finding out they were on drugs without them knowing.
In some cases, the teens can go rebellious thinking they are being punished for their behavior or their parents don’t want them anymore and get insecure. This is why outpatient rehab is a great option to be considered as well!
Outpatient Rehab For Teens
Outpatient rehab is an excellent option because it involves visiting the facility during the day and the kids can still stay with their parents overnight.
This will give both the kids and parents a sense of control and they can meet halfway with the situation.
Another benefit to outpatient rehab is that it can go on for as long as necessary without disrupting the normal life of the kids too much.
It is important to understand the struggles teenagers go through and help your kids beside the rehab program they are attending. Talking and confrontation are key!
It is also a considerable option for those who don’t have a serious addiction or have been using opioids only recreationally.
Parents can also play a role in this by keeping a check on their kid’s activities at home and making sure none of their triggers are present anymore.
In some cases, both inpatient and outpatient programs can help. Once the inpatient rehab is over, outpatient rehab can be availed to ensure long term recovery of your teenager without the risk of relapse and continuing it for a few years until they are old enough to maintain their sobriety on their own is also a good option!
As a parent, you have to look out for signs of addiction in teenagers, deal with the situation really carefully and choose the best recovery options for your teenager.