Substance abuse counselors may also take it upon themselves to provide substance abuse education to the general public. There are groups such as the American Council for Drug Education (ACDE) and the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) that are already in existence but the task is large, the journey arduous, and the quest never complete. As specialists in the field, we can provide deeper angles for substance abuse education, such as the psychology of addiction and the signs, symptoms, and environments related to substance abuse, as opposed to just what they look like, how to say no, etc.
Substance Abuse Education is a Must
Youngsters in the schooling system are fortunate to be visited by DARE and other organizations and to have responsible adults such as their teachers, princicples, and school counselors available to help them. Many also have a supportive community such as church and family. For those that don’t, extracurricular substance abuse education can be life saver.
Substance abuse education usually involves making kids aware. Substance abuse education is the first protective layer of armor available, and it is important for them to have this before they develop the capacity for other types of armor, such as a strong sense of self and self-esteem and the ability to not cave into peer pressure. Children need to be aware of what these illicit substances are and what they look like. They need to be armed with help in learning how to say no, and how to avoid certain situations and environments. They need to know they are too good to fall into substance abuse. They need to understand that help is available for themselves or a friend who unfortunately gets involved with using substances. Substance abuse education also helps children understand the effects of using substances and the effects of substance abuse. They need to comprehend that while it may seem enticing and fun, in the short and long run there are extreme health risks. They need to understand that they are not done growing and these powerful substances can alter their development permanently. For these reasons, substance abuse education is a must.
Providing Substance Abuse Education
Substance abuse education need not be boring and monotonous for the presenter nor the children. There are many entertaining ways of helping the youth learn about this topic. Children need to be educated through all of their senses. You may visually help them by showing them picture galleries or actual substances. You can provide them with drug knowledge quizzes to help them guage their own sensibilities about substance abuse. You can play video testimonies and show images with the effects of drug use on the body. Some people argue that these are horrible tactics, and that providing substance abuse education is exactly that, teaching kids how to abuse substances. But at risk children are likely to do this regardless of these presentations. The presentations are a great safeguard to those who are teetering on the brink or are curious. They need to know the harmful effects.
Please check out the Resources page by clicking the link above on the navigational menu. We provide links to powerful resources to help a substance abuse counselor and anyone else provide substance abuse education to the youth of their community.