Stress, Substance Use, and Your Teen

According to Richard S. Lazarus, stress is a feeling experienced when a person thinks that demand exceeds the personal and social resources the individual can mobilize. It can also be defined as mental, physical and emotional reactions someone experiences as a result of demands of life. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), substance abuse is a maladaptive pattern use of drugs or alcohol leading to clinically significant impairment or distress. Stress is a well-known risk factor in the development of addiction or rather substance use disorder (Enoch, 2011).

Numerous studies have linked stress and substance abuse. Researchers believe that stress can cause brain changes which leads to misuse of substance use. Also, there are some mental health disorders such as depression that has been linked to substance usage. Stress leads to an increase in vulnerability of substance use (Sinha, 2001). There are a series of the population-based and epidemiology studies that have identified specific stressors and individual level variables that are predictive of substance use. Stress experiences can be emotionally or physiologically challenging and activate stress responses and adaptive processes to regain homeostasis (Sinha, 2001).

Learn more about the link between stress and substance use here: Stress linked to substance use

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Teach Your Kids NOT to Bully

It can be shocking and difficult to learn that your child has been bullied or is bullying another child. Whether it’s verbal or physical, if it’s not stopped it can lead to more aggressive anti-social behavior and interfere with your child’s school success.

There are many reason kids bully. Some do it because they’re insecure and picking on others who seem emotionally or physically weaker makes them feel important or in control. In other cases, kids bully because they don’t know it’s not acceptable to pick on others that are different; while others bully other kids to fit in.

Additionally, bullying can be a part of an ongoing pattern of defiant or aggressive behavior. These kids are likely to need help learning to manage anger and frustration. They may not have the skills to cooperate with others. Professional counseling can often help them to learn to deal with their feelings, curb their bullying, and improve social skills.

For more information, visit: Teach Your Kids NOT to Bully

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