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National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week Sparks Conversations on Substance Use Among Youth

Various bottles of liquor sit empty against a white wall.

Today’s youth are faced with a number of unique pressures that leave many struggling with ways to cope. From mental health struggles fueled by societal pressures and academic stress, to lack of connection and identity issues spurred by increased technology use, many young people find themselves turning to drug and alcohol use as a result. Engaging in these behaviors can put young people at risk for addiction and long-term damage to brain development, making education a crucial tool to help youth understand the potential effects of substance abuse on their physical and mental health. 

At Community Treatment Integrations Oklahoma (CTI-OK), we’re champions of National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week (NDAFW), an annual health initiative designed to address drug and alcohol use among youth. This year from March 18-24, scientists, health professionals, government agencies, nonprofits and more will unite with the goal of spreading awareness and enhancing prevention efforts of substance misuse across the nation.

Substance use disorder (SUD) is a treatable mental health condition that inhibits a person’s brain and behavior and impacts their ability to control use of substances like drugs and alcohol. SUD is incredibly common: according to the 2022 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, approximately 15 percent of underage people aged 12 to 20 drank alcohol in the past month, while more than 48 million Americans over the age of 12 experience substance use disorder each year. 

SUDs can have major impacts on an individual’s work, school and home life, and trying to stop using a substance can be much more complex than choosing to use willpower. Effective treatments, such as behavioral therapy, are available to help people navigate substance use and learn to rebuild relationships. 

Substance use disorder is a manageable chronic condition, but despite a wide variety of treatment options, many individuals encounter significant barriers to care that inhibit them from seeking the treatment they deserve. From stigma and discrimination to lack of awareness and financial constraints, too many individuals suffer in silence.

What is National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week?

NDAFW serves as a week-long opportunity to break down many of those barriers. Communities can actively participate in NDAFW to promote better understanding of substance use. Events can be sponsored by a variety of organizations, including schools, community groups, and local hospitals. Programming can vary: anything from social media campaigns to myth-busting workshops are effective outlets for connecting youth with resources about drug and alcohol use.

Drug and alcohol awareness among youth is crucial. Early education is a powerful proactive measure that helps young people make informed and responsible decisions regarding substance use, giving them agency over their own well-being and empowering them to make healthier choices.

Substance Use Disorder Treatment Options 

Treatment options for substance use have come a long way. Substance use can affect anyone, regardless of factors like age, income or race. At CTI-OK, we offer a holistic approach without shame or judgment, including:

  • Specific Programs for Men, Women & Adolescents

  • Individual Counseling

  • Family Counseling

  • Family Care Plan

  • Group Therapy

  • Relapse Prevention

  • Ambulatory Detox

  • Medication Management

We offer outpatient, intensive outpatient and inpatient treatment services to help individuals and their families understand and battle addiction. All services are provided with the goal of supporting the recovery or assisting in the stabilization of the person or persons served, reducing symptoms, restoring function and preventing additional functional impairment.

By participating in NDAFW and hosting events, activities, and discussions aimed at spreading awareness and dispelling myths about the science surrounding substance use, all of us can help foster a culture of acceptance and empathy in which individuals are empowered to make informed choices and seek the help they need.

To learn more about how we can help, contact us at (918) 384-0002 or fill out the contact form and we'll be in touch with you soon.


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