Drugs change the way our brain works. That’s how it becomes an addiction. It trains your mind and body to think that it needs the drug. When people fall into addiction, that’s one of the first things they experience. That addiction is a compulsion. But what happens when a teenager, who is still in their growth phase, takes drugs? Here are some ways drugs affect teen brains and what you can do to help your teen if you think they have a drug problem.
Interferes with Development
Drug use gets in the way of a teen’s brain development. Teenagers undergo adolescence. Their bodies change drastically through this period. But if drug use becomes a factor or enters the picture, that could stunt your teenager’s brain development. That will affect their growth. If you think your teen is struggling with substance abuse, start looking into facilities that offer drug rehab in Arizona.
Drug abuse also reduces one’s ability to experience pleasure. If your teen is taking drugs, misusing the substance can lead to the production of fewer neurotransmitters. Fewer transmitters in one’s reward circuit mean less amount of pleasure.
Creates Memory Problems
When a teenager struggles with drug use, they can also suffer from memory problems. Since drugs affect the brain’s development, that capacity is also compromised. Teens with drug abuse problems may have a hard time remembering. Help your teen receive professional help to prevent long-term health damage.
Leads to Missed Opportunities
Adolescence is when kids grow. It is a period of massive learning potential. However, due to compromised brain development, your teen may also struggle with future learning opportunities. Lack of brain development can also lead to missed growth opportunities. Getting your teen immediate help can make a difference and ensure that this doesn’t happen or that your child’s brain development doesn’t decline any further.
Develops Unhealthy Habits
Drug use can ingrain unhealthy habits into your child’s brain circuitry. And while it is possible to change those unhealthy habits, it takes time and hard work. You can prevent those bad habits from developing by getting your child the help they need.
Inhibits Perceptual Abilities
Drug use also compromises a teenager’s perceptual abilities. They have poor perception, and that also inhibits their growth and mental development. Poor perception can lead to bad decisions and an inability to handle emotionally challenging situations, which could drive them further back into addiction. Rehab can help them improve their mental state so their learning abilities and growth may continue instead of getting stunted.
Other Effects of Drug Abuse
Drugs can result in the following:
- Physical problems such as lower or poor bone mineral density, shorter limbs, reduced potential for physical growth, and higher levels of enzymes leading to liver damage
- Social risks, such as getting into a road accident, being involved in assaults, unplanned pregnancies, delayed career opportunities, and more
- Professional risks, because criminal records will be on record and that could damage potential career opportunities or lose the individual potential employment