“At-risk” youth is a term we hear often when we discuss the youth at risk for domestic violence, drug addiction, and substance abuse. Most often, the term “at-risk” refers to specific demographics based on race, environment, culture, and socioeconomic status. What fails to be understood too often is that all children are at-risk because the child’s mind is fragile in its development. Any number of life circumstances could lead to the development of a mental illness like anxiety or depression which, later in a child’s life, could lead to a substance abuse problem. Research is finding that earlier interventions, before the signs of a problem arise, could be a promising form of prevention. TIME reports that “Part of the answer soon may be to start putting more at-risk preschoolers- and their parents- in therapy.” Depression and anxiety are usually seen as “at-risk” symptoms. For example, when a child, adolescent, or teen begins displaying symptoms of depression and anxiety, they are then “at-risk” for developing a substance use disorder. Increasing amounts of attention is being put on the risk before the risk- detecting the earliest signs of what will contribute to later signs of what will contribute to the signs of substance use or mental health disorders. Today’s youth are struggling with addiction and mental health disorders at earlier ages. Reports have found that depression can occur as early as 11 years old, perhaps before. Treatment centers like Stonewater Adolescent Recovery Center exist to serve the population of young men who have fallen into mental health struggles at young adolescent and teen ages. Early interventions of therapeutic efforts could make the difference in a child’s life by beginning to equip them with the tools they need in life before problems arise. Children are taught many things in school: history, arithmetic, sharing, teamwork, social studies, some arts, even language and english communication. Through rigorous academic training children gain academic intelligence. What children aren’t taught is emotional intelligence. Classes don’t include feelings, identifying emotion, articulating them, coping with them. Parents who take the extra opportunity to identify problematic behaviors, personality traits, or early symptoms of mental health disorders, they can intervene at an earlier age, empowering their children.
Stonewater Adolescent Recovery Center offers residential treatment and academic support to adolescent and teenage males. Building a foundation of recovery, our treatment programs offer life cleansing therapies for mind, body, and spirit. Call us today for information: 662-598-4214