This week, May 14-20, is National Prevention Week, which aims to raise public awareness of, and action around, substance abuse and mental health issues. This yearly observance educates both adults and teens on the negative effects of tobacco, alcohol, and illicit drug use. Research shows most teens experiment with drugs for the first time in June or July, which is why this strategically held week allows both parents and teachers to prepare their students for this key period of social transition and influx of free time.
The theme this year is “Making Each Day Count,” highlighting the important role individuals and communities alike have in helping people lead healthy, productive lives and in raising awareness about the importance of substance use prevention and the promotion of mental wellness.
A large portion of this week is focused on the prevention of suicide and promoting mental health awareness. Because substance abuse and mental illness often go hand in hand, it is important both of issues are addressed simultaneously for long-term recovery success.
Substance abuse prevention is particularly important for teens because these substances can disrupt brain development in areas critical to motivation, memory, learning, judgment, and behavior control. This disturbance in brain development can lead to mental illness in the future, or exacerbate issues already present.
There is no better way to fight against drug abuse than to stop the problem before it starts. National Prevention Week promoters have started to promote awareness and educate the community on substance abuse and mental illness. Prevention is power, and you have the power to fight back against this destructive and prevalent issue.
If you or a loved one is struggling with substance abuse and mental illness, also known as Dual Diagnosis, call us today at (888) 507-1355 for a free and confidential assessment. Our trained treatment specialists are ready to find the right treatment program for you.
“Treatment without prevention is simply unsustainable.” -Bill Gates