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SUBSTANCE ABUSE
Believe You Can And You’re Halfway There

Jonah was 15 years old and addicted to nicotine and pot. His use of tobacco started around age 11 and then he started smoking pot around age 13. His older brother had introduced him to smoking and he had managed to hide his use of both substances from his parents until a few weeks before they brought him in for an assessment.

Jonah’s mom explained that Jonah’s grades had been poor for the past couple of years and that his moods were erratic and sometimes explosive. “Now it all makes more sense,” she said, “knowing that he’s been using drugs.” Jonah was not happy about being caught or being brought in for treatment. “I don’t know why I have to come here. There’s nothing wrong with me,” he said.

Upon further questioning, Jonah revealed that he often felt sad “for no reason” and that smoking both nicotine and cannabis helped improve his mood. It took a while, but eventually I was able to convince Jonah that his self medication might be doing more harm than good. He reluctantly agreed to enroll in an intensive outpatient program that met for 4 hours a day, 5 days a week, designed to help teens stop using substances. After completing 3 months of intensive outpatient therapy, Jonah was finally able to stop using tobacco and cannabis. Eventually, he was diagnosed with depression and ADD after he had been clean from substance use for 6 months and we medicated him properly for these conditions.

Jonah is now in his second year of university and is doing very well. He doesn’t smoke or drink alcohol and will be the first to tell you that his life is exceptionally enjoyable. He’s studying to be an addiction counselor so he can dedicate his life to helping others who struggle, the way he did.

Facts About Substance Abuse Disorders

  • Children and teens who use alcohol and drugs are more likely to have a substance use disorder as adults.
  • There is a clear link between depression and substance abuse.
  • Teen substance abuse includes using legal medications without a prescription.

Self-Test For Substance Abuse and Addiction

1

DRUG ABUSE

Do you feel like you need to use the drug daily?

1

DRUG ABUSE

Do you do things you wouldn’t normally do, in order to get drugs?

1

DRUG ABUSE

Do you make sure you have a steady supply of your drug of choice on hand?

1

DRUG ABUSE

Do you want to stop using, but can’t?

1

DRUG ABUSE

Do you feel you need drugs to function?

1

DRUG ABUSE

Are you willing to do something dangerous while taking drugs, like driving a car?

1

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Do you think you have a problem with alcohol?

2

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Do you lose time from work or school due to drinking?

3

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Has your drinking affected your relationships with friends?

4

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Do you feel depressed or ashamed after drinking alcohol?

5

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Do you drink because you are anxious or nervous in social situations?

6

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Do you drink alcohol to improve your self-confidence?

7

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Do you drink when you are alone?

8

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Do you drink to escape from your daily life?

9

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Have people in your life expressed concern over your drinking habits?

10

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Are you more social and fun to be around when you drink?

11

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Have you experienced financial troubles over buying alcohol?

12

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Have you lost friends because of your alcohol use?

13

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Do you drink more than most of your friends?

14

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Do you drink until you can’t drink anymore?

15

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Have you ever had a complete loss of memory or a blackout from drinking?

16

ALCOHOL ABUSE

Have you ever been to a hospital, received a DUI or been arrested due to drunken behavior?

If you answered YES to 3 or more of the following questions, you may be suffering from a substance use disorder or addiction and should speak with a professional about your symptoms.

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What WellPsyche Patients Are Saying

“Our WellPsyche provider helped my son continue his path of recovery after he was discharged from a 6 month residential treatment program for alcohol abuse. He’s about to celebrate his 1 year sober anniversary and we couldn’t be prouder of him!”

Darren, Austin's Dad

“I had started using pills to help me cope with the stress of my life. I felt overwhelmed and started using pills that a friend offered me. At first, I felt so much better. Then I got to the point where I needed them several times a day just to function. It was expensive and I started stealing things to sell so I could buy more pills. I hated what I was doing but I felt trapped, like I didn’t have a choice. I ended up getting arrested and that was the point that my parents made me go to rehab. I’m not gonna lie, it sucked. But when I got out, I found a doctor who helped me stop the cravings to use and helped me sleep better, which was a big problem for me before rehab.”

Reina, age 17

Did You Know?

MANY famous and highly successful people have been diagnosed with Addiction including Drew Barrymore, Actress; Robert Downey Jr. Actor; Johnny Depp Actor; Eminem, Rapper, Songwriter; Oprah Winfrey, Entrepreneur, CEO, television personality; Stephen King, Author, just to name a few.

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