When you or a loved one struggles with addiction, it is imperative to find help as soon as possible because addiction is a chronic condition that worsens over time. Substance abuse disorders and addiction are family diseases, making engaging in a family therapy program very important during mental health treatment.

Adolescence is a particularly trying time. Because the human brain doesn’t fully develop until the late twenties, teens are especially prone to making poor decisions. It’s not uncommon for adolescents and teens to use substances like marijuana and alcohol. Doing so damages their development and can lead to emotional and psychological issues like depression or anxiety. When confronting these behaviors and mental health issues, a family therapy treatment program is often an effective way not only to identify problems but overcome them together.

teen in family therapy programWhat is Addiction?

Addiction is a chronic, incurable disease that can impair your judgment, cause serious medical problems, and lead to cognitive damage. In teens, substance abuse disorders are especially dangerous because the brain’s reasoning centers don’t fully develop until the age of 25. Teenagers are more likely to make impulsive decisions and have difficulty controlling their emotions. This means that teens are more prone to experimenting with drugs or alcohol, leading to abuse and dependency.

During addiction, your brain becomes dependent on your substance of choice to release neurotransmitters. For example, alcohol causes your brain to release a GABA rush, which is a neurotransmitter that causes feelings of relaxation. Once the effects of alcohol end, you are suddenly left depleted of GABA, which can cause depressed moods and increase your desire to drink.

Some of the most common signs of addiction in teens include:

  • Mood and behavioral changes
  • Losing interest in hobbies
  • Poor grades
  • Truancy
  • Hanging out with friends who use drugs or alcohol
  • Changes in physical appearance, such as bloodshot eyes

While addiction is a chronic condition, recovery is possible with substance abuse or mental health treatment. During treatment, a family therapy program ensures your loved ones and family members are involved in the recovery process.

What is a Family Therapy Program?

Our family therapy programs offer holistic therapy and evidence-based treatments to help family members work together during recovery. A family therapy program addresses how addiction has impacted the entire family and how all members can recover. Addiction can damage and hurt familial relationships, especially when family members disagree about how to address addiction.

During a family therapy program, families learn how to set boundaries and support each other in a positive, healthy way. Another benefit of a family therapy program is that family members learn how to identify signs of a relapse. Nearly half of all people in recovery experience at least one relapse, making it important to understand how to respond when a loved one relapses.

A family therapy program can also help family members connect with additional resources, such as individual counseling. A family therapy program’s ultimate goal is to improve your loved one’s ability to achieve recovery while ensuring that you have the support necessary to live a happy and healthy life.

Finding Help Today

Struggling with a substance abuse disorder or addiction can make you feel isolated, stressed, and overwhelmed. Addiction impacts millions of Americans aged 12 and older, but recovery is always possible. Connecting with a treatment center as early as possible is the best way to improve your or your loved one’s chances of recovery. At Destinations for Teens, we offer numerous programs, such as:

If you or your teen is dealing with a substance abuse problem, contact us today at 877.466.0620 to find out more about our family therapy program and your treatment options.