Drug Use Among Adolescents

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Illicit drug use among adolescents is a global health concern that results in social, economic, and health problems (Saxe et al., 2001). Many efforts have been aimed to reduce this public health problem; while some may have beneficial, the rates remain high (Ilgen, et al., 2011). Research shows that adolescents would benefit from interventions and treatment, but often they do not get it (Cuijpers, 2002; Faggiano et al., 2008; Winters, Leitten, Wagner, & O 'Leary Tevyaw, 2007; Wu, Blazer, Li, & Woody, 2011). Health professionals understand the seriousness of this health problem and its contribution to the worldwide burden of disease (Ketterer et al., 2014). According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS, 2014b), the use …show more content…
While general practitioners have a vital role in detection and management, Ketterer et al. (2014) states that some view substance abuse patients as burdens. General practitioners often feel unfit for treating patients with substance abuse problems, and feel that extra training would be beneficial. There a wide range of factors that can determine whether a medical professional feels comfortable and competent treating a user. General practitioners have stated that help is needed from practitioners of other disciplines to help detect, manage, and treat illicit drug users. They have also said that sometimes treating a substance abuser can trigger deep emotions or feelings of heavy responsibility. Others indicate that with age and experience their attitudes changed regarding the diagnosis and treatment of drug abuse (Ketterer et al., 2014) Overall, Ketterer et al. (2014) found that practitioners had a variety of perceptions regarding this health problem that ranged from chronic disease to moral failing. This concludes that medical professionals’ behaviors can stem from values, morals, social experiences, and training. Self-care support workshops, additional training, the development of new tools, and more frequent collaboration within in the medical community is recommended to improve a medical professional’s self-assurance among this health problem (Kettler et al.,

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