Addiction Education – Should we be Giving Our Kids More of It?
Addiction education is something everyone can use more of. It’s a complicated disease with no clear solution, but
often when people are educated about the effects of addiction and given a true look at what it is like, it can reduce the chances that others will make the same decisions as those that led others to do the same.
So, what kind of education should we be giving our kids, and how can it help to keep them from developing an addiction?
Addiction education can only do part of the job
Now, it’s important to remember that addiction education is only going to go so far with our kids. We know though, that kids with positive influences, and who know what can happen as a result of developing an addiction are much less likely to try addictive substances in the first place.
We also know that kids who are able to talk to an adult that they trust are much less likely than their counterparts with nobody to talk to, to even experiment with using or drinking.
That being said, many feel that we aren’t being “real” enough with our kids about the true risks of alcohol or substance abuse. There are lots of organizations that try, but when it comes to the broad spectrum of addiction, many experts feel that we’re not being honest enough.
What should we really be doing?
If children are given addiction education, and parents are educated about addiction at the same time, we might be able to offset some of the biggest risks for developing an addiction. For kids, the most important factors might have to do with the risks of abusing substances or alcohol. For adults, educating about addiction should include teaching warning signs, ways to connect, and tools to help keep kids from even wanting to try substances or alcohol.
Another important factor that can affect whether children start using or drinking includes bullying. While great strides have been made to keep kids from bullying one another, there is still the problem. Parents need to keep their eyes out for any signs, either that their child is being bullied, or that their child is actually being a bully.
For now, it seems we are still faced with the reality of educating our children about addiction through the few school programs our kids experience, and what we’re willing to provide our kids with ourselves.