How Do You Help a Teen's Alcohol Addiction?
One of the casualties when it comes to alcohol addiction is the many teenagers that start drinking at younger ages each generation. As time goes on, what use to be something that adults would enjoy, is now causing severe addictions in teenagers as young as 14 years old.
Keeping the Numbers In Front
Alberta has a large number of people who have admitted to using alcohol. Surveys have shown that over 96% of the people in Alberta have tried a drink at some point in their life. An alarmingly high number of these had their first drink at seventeen or younger. Knowing these numbers will help parents be able to stay aware of the risk involved.
Denial Is Not a Friend
When a parent is confronted with alcohol addiction within their home, it is best not to deny it and turn away from it. You will be doing a lot more harm than good. The reality of this addiction is that when teenagers begin drinking it usually turns into a serious addiction that can change their personality, their life, and cause debilitating medical conditions. Talking to a teen about their addiction is a very hard thing to do. However, it is a task that must be done.
Don't Let Them Tell You
One approach that many parents resort to is waiting until their teenager lets them know about their drinking problem. There are times when this does happen, but more often than not, it is not brought up. The teenager will be scared about disappointing their parents, or making them mad, so they continue to hide it and drift deeper into the addiction.
If there are any indications that a teenager is drinking the best way to deal with it is through a swift confrontation. This should not be done when there are friends around, or other families. However, getting to the issue of drinking, without embarrassing the teen, is important to success.
Continually Enforce Love
One of the reasons that a teen does not tell their parents is that they are ashamed, and do not want to anger their parents. When confronting a teenager who is struggling with an alcohol addiction, or even drinking casually at parties, it should be made clear that they are still a part of the family, there is no anger, and that they are loved. Throughout the entire process of talking, and treating, this should be continually enforced.
Get Immediate Help
The good thing about talking with a teenager quickly when there is a suspicion of drinking, or addiction, is that they can bounce back from addiction very fast. When suspicions are confirmed, treatment should be initiated immediately. The counseling of the treatment is received easier when the teenager does not have time to rebel or continue drinking.
Success Rates Increase When Family Effort
Once an alcohol treatment program or counseling has been started, it is important for the family to stick together. This is a critical time in the teen's life and should not go through any of it alone. Success rates increase sharply when there is a complete family involvement throughout the process.