Your Addicted Child

Richard Capriola, author and addictions counselor talks about the signs to look for when a child is addicted and steps to help a child with addiction and signs to look for when you suspect a child of doing drugs or alcohol.

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#childaddiction #addiction #substanceabuse #drugs #alcohol

Transcript: Many cases of the child will not only be using a substance but they will be struggling with an underlying issue like maybe anxiety or depression or some type of abuse that might’ve occurred at school that as a parent you did not know anything about today is a Christian author of a new book for parents in titled the addicted child a parents guide to adolescent substance abuse welcome Richard thank you thank you so much for the opportunity to be here and to talk to you and all the audience about this important issue of adolescent substance abuse so thank you very much oh you’re welcome and I just looked but just give us a little bit about a story of how you got this started and Where you began this actually started as a result of me being employed at Meininger clinic in Houston Texas which is a large psychiatric hospital I worked there for over a decade as an addictions counselor serving both adolescents and adults and so many times I would sit across from a family and I would go through their child’s history of using a substance abuse substance like alcohol or maybe it was marijuana and when I finish they would look across at me and they would say I had no idea this was going on or if they did suspect their child was using a substance they would say I sort of thought something was going on but I didn’t know it was this bad and these were good parents doing the best job that they could they missed the warning signs because nobody told him what to look for so after I retired from Meininger clinic I wanted to write this brief book it’s only about 100 pages because I know parents don’t have a lot of time I’m to read volumes of information but I wanted to packet with information that I hope will be a blessing and will be a resource for parents so that they feel more confident and more self-assured about this issue be better prepared for it if needed and not be so afraid of it you know now in your book you talk about some of the street drugs that are out there can you talk about that a little bit yeah I wanted parents to know do you know what some of these drugs are that kids have access to because when we ask high school students how easy is it for you to get these drugs the overwhelming percentage of them tell us it’s very easy for them to find drugs if they want to so parents know about alcohol and they know about marijuana but they might not know about some of these other drugs that are on the street things like hallucinogens like LSD Mushrooms some of the over the counter drugs that kids have access to some of the prescription drugs like Adderall and Ritalin drugs like LSD some of the stimulant drugs that are out there so I wanted to give them a very brief introduction into these drugs so that if they hear about them or there somebody mention something to them they can flip this book open and then just a couple of pages get an overview of what this drug is that they’ve heard about what are some of the warning signs every parent should know well I think that’s all that’s an excellent question because if parents should be aware of some of the warning signs I have a warning signs in my book about marijuana I have warning signs about alcohol use I have warning signs for a child that might be developing an eating disorder or self harming themselves because sometimes those will accompany a child using a substance like alcohol or marijuana but generally what I recommend is pay tension to the changes that you see in your child don’t assume that the changes in behavior that you’re seeing are just normal adolescent acting out they may very well be that but it might be an indicator of some things that are going on underneath the surface some examples would be a child whose grades are declining a child who used to be very social and outgoing now becomes very quiet and reserved a child who used to enjoy playing for sports no longer wants to participate in sports a child who used to introduce you to their friends you knew who their friends were you might even know who their family members were now becomes very quiet and secretive about who their friends are so these are examples of changes that you were observing your child if they go on for a short period of time it’s probably not too concerning but if they linger and they go on and on and then you start to see More of these changes maybe one or two and then there’s another one three or four then I think it’s time to to get some evaluation’s and assessments done so as a parent you have a better understanding of what’s going on with your child you know that makes me think about you know these kids you know when they change their friends what is like that the antennas need to go up as a parent right yeah because you don’t know where that kid is coming from and what kind of influence that that child is having on your child so you know there you said you talk a little bit about the treatment options that can be parents can look into what is that well there is no one treatment that that fits every child every child situation and every child’s diagnosis every child’s assessment and treatment will be different so the treatment really becomes individualized as it should be in the range of treatment depends on the severity of the substance use and whether there’s an underlying condition because in many cases not all cases but in many cases of the child will not only be using a substance but they will be struggling with an underlying issue like maybe anxiety or depression or some type of abuse that might’ve occurred at school that as a parent you did not know anything about it so the treatment really is individualized some kids will do very well in an outpatient program where they see somebody maybe once or twice a week other kids will need what we call intensive outpatient program where they see somebody several times a week and then for some kids where the substance abuse is so severe or the underlying emotional issue is so complicated like depression or anxiety in addition to the substance-abuse they may be looking at what we call a residential program where the child is sent away for a short period of time to get intensive daily treatment you know it also makes me think about it there are parents out there that they may even know their kids is doing drugs but they’re hesitant to take that step out so it’s like you’re scared is there something that you can help them with that that maybe give him some tips on how to help them but this is a very scary subject for parents or parents are going to feel scared they’re going to feel anxious they may even feel angry angry and these are all normal emotions that we go through when we’re confronted with a situation like finding out that our child is using a substance but the worst thing that a parent can do it is is to try and avoid this issue to try and act as if it’s not there the best thing to do is get the assessments done that I’ve recommended in my book get the professional opinions as to what the next step should be what kind of intervention is needed what kind of treatment is needed and then proceed to implement those recommendations my message to the parents is that there is hope that you can get through this and your child can get through this your family can get through this treatment is effective treatment does work and the sooner you can intervene and get to the treatment the sooner your child and your family can recover from this so before we close Richard I was wondering if you could give us a story of a you know the healing that happened or you know something good yeah sure that’s a great that’s a great question I had a young lady come into the hospital with her family she had been using a substance like marijuana and alcohol had also developed a A pattern of self injury cutting on her self initially she did not want to come in to treatment but most of adolescents try to argue her way out of it and negotiate her way out of it and it was very opposed to coming into her treatment but her but her parents held the line and they insisted that she come in for the first few days she was oppositional and argumentative and exhibiting that she didn’t want to be there but as she stayed in treatment her parents insisted that she stay in treatment you know gradually I began to see a shift in her attitude and she got involved in the individual treatment in the group process she was there for about three weeks before we referred her onto a residential program by the time she left she was more open to treatment she was looking forward to going to her new treatment facility and she made quite a quite a bit of Progress she was in that residential program for a period of time and later I heard back from her that she had graduated from the program she had finished high school she has enrolled in college and was doing really well so that’s an example of a story on how treatment can work how parents can hold the line and how treatment works and the outcome can really be a wonderful thing to see and she said she she was she was doing really remarkably well and you know the Lord gives us extra strength to step out and take a hold of our troubles and our trials and this is a really good resource for parents so thank you for joining us today I appreciate your time and and and I do want this book to be a blessing for others hopefully hopefully they will read it in and getting a lot of information from it I just wanted to be a helpful resource for parents to get Richard’s book go to

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Producer of The Call with Nancy Sabato an interview program with people who are called to serve God, stories of redemption, overcoming sin, depression, disease, and addiction, and stories of miracles and life-changing stories to an audience seeking the truth, found only in Jesus Christ. Weekly segments include Bible Teachers that bring truth and wisdom to the audience. Many Christian encouraging speakers are invited to share ways to be energized and hopeful in your faith journey. Previous guests include Stormie O Martian, June Hunt, Sharon Jaynes, Carol McLeod, Mary Southerland, and many more. "Encouraging and lifting you to know Christ."

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