Substance Misuse

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MindEd provides free mental health e-learning for anyone who works or volunteers with children, teenagers or young people. The MindEd programme includes free online CAMHS training, counselling courses and mental health resources for teachers and health professionals.

This session focuses on substance misuse in teenagers and young people. It covers teenage alcoholism, binge drinking and drug taking as well as the treatment options available.

  • Substance misuse refers to taking a substance so often that it affects a young person's education, training or work and causes trouble with family, friends, romantic relationships, or with police.
  • Apart from cigarette smoking, the most common substances used by young people are alcohol and cannabis. By their mid-teens most young people have sampled alcohol.
  • Teenage binge drinking and teenagers and drugs can cause their own problems for a young person, but those who drink or use drugs may have other problems as well.
  • Assessment should examine: the substances used and modes of delivery, timelines and motivations.
  • Organisations often work together to address the complicated needs of young people including: housing, social services, NHS, education, youth offending services and charities.
  • Some young people are in crisis. If they are at risk of violence or another serious situation, then the police or children's services should be informed.

Access the full MindEd session here.
Content provided by MindEd. Author: Paul McArdle. Published: March 2014. Review: March 2017.

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